HARRIS COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- A veteran Harris County deputy constable whose recent hiring was under scrutiny has already resigned from his new job.
13 Investigates reported about Sgt. Wayne Schultz last week. Harris County Precinct 6 Constable's Office said he turned in a letter of resignation on Monday.
Schultz started working for Pct. 6 earlier this month after leaving Harris County Precinct 1 Constable's Office when he was caught with a GPS scrambling device on his patrol car, which is an FCC violation, according to state records obtained by ABC13.
He resigned from Pct. 1 while under investigation on July 7, but quickly got the new position with Pct. 6. He worked for Pct. 1 for almost three years, the department said.
"We do not tolerate this behavior," Pct.1 said in a statement to ABC13. "He was taken off patrol and soon thereafter given a 'general discharge,' not an honorable discharge.
Agencies have to choose between three categories when reporting an officer's separation to the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE). They are general, honorable, and dishonorable.
With Schultz's general discharge, 10 days later, he had a job at Pct. 6.
"We follow the law, and we follow the rules of TCOLE," a spokesman with Precinct 6 Constable Silvia Trevino's Office said.
Texas 2036 is a nonprofit that has studied officers who change departments under suspicious circumstances. They are called "wandering officers."
"Research from Florida shows wandering officers who get fired or are let go for misconduct or poor performance, they're more likely than their peers to engage in further misconduct and further bad behavior," Luis Soberon, a policy advisor for Texas 2036, said. "It's a question of quality and the caliber of law officers who are serving Texans every day."
The organization has made recommendations, and in this legislative session, lawmakers took action. A law was passed to create a new system for reporting officer misconduct. Agencies will be required to send detailed accounts to the state when officers resign or are fired.
"Making sure there are more checks in place. Those are the kinds of things that can make progress in stopping wandering officers from moving between agencies," Soberon added.
Schultz, who has worked for six departments over 30 years, according to TCOLE, did not respond to a request for comment. He has not been charged with a crime.
Precinct 1 sent a complete statement which reads, in part:
"We proactively investigated this case after we discovered the GPS scrambling device in his patrol car. The device is an FCC violation and, therefore, against our policy to have one. After a lengthy investigation, we found NO evidence he was using it in his vehicle so that he could work an extra job while on duty. He claimed he had the device so that a family member couldn't track him. But again, it is an FCC violation. We do not tolerate this behavior. He was taken off patrol and soon thereafter given a "general discharge." Not an "honorable discharge." Pct. 6 has access to his entire Pct.1 file, including the investigation."