GALVESTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A Galveston County commissioner is now explaining why he was once a member of the Oath Keepers.
Several members of the far-right extremist group have been charged in connection with the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S.Capitol.
ABC13 partner, The Texas Tribune, reports that more than 3,000 Texans are in the group, including police chiefs.
Commissioner Joe Giusti said he is no longer a member of the Oath Keepers.
"I was in for one year. The reason I got in was it made sense to uphold the constitution," Giusti said. "It was law-enforcement, it was military, retired military folks. We were there just to do that, uphold the constitution."
Giusti is distancing himself now from the Oath Keepers, a group that believes the federal government is trying to take away people's freedom.
Giusti joined the organization around 2009 while working as a law-enforcement officer in Galveston County.
He told ABC13 he stayed in the group for about a year.
"Once I was in it, basically it started going in the wrong direction, more far, far right," Giusti said.
The Texas Tribune reports that Giusti is one of more than 38,000 names found on an Oath Keepers membership list that recently leaked.
Today, many of the members have been connected to the attack on the Capitol.
Giusti said those who protested on Jan. 6 in Washington crossed a line.
"Being a former law-enforcement officer and still being in reserve law enforcement officer, it was a terrible sight because we have institutions that if you want to protest, fine protest, but don't step over that line, no matter who you are," Giusti said.
Giusti told ABC13 that seeing members post their extreme views online made him drop his membership.
"The constitution is there for everybody," Giusti said. "Not just right or left, or anything else, it's there for everybody. When it started going too far right, I'm like yeah, I don't want part of that."
ABC13 asked the commissioner, who is currently a reserve law-enforcement officer, what message he has to people in Galveston who elected him, hoping he has their best interest at heart.
"I've always treated everybody exactly the same when it comes to my precinct," Giusti said. "I'm not worried about what's going on in Washington. I'm worried about floods in Galveston County and roadways in Galveston County. That's been my focus. And I don't care who you are; if you call me, I'm going to help you if I can."