Jury convicts guard who deployed Taser at Walmart

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- A tense confrontation on video between a Walmart security guard and two young men that went viral a couple years ago has resulted in the guard's conviction.

The three and a half minute video posted on YouTube documented the heated exchange outside the Walmart in the 9400 block of W. Sam Houston Tollwa near Beechnut.

The young men claimed to just be recording shopping carts in the parking lot. The officer didn't like it and definitely didn't like the camera turned on him. On the recording you can hear the guard ask for identification. When the men question him, he verbally pushes back and at one point aims his Taser at them.

We've learned the guard is William Marks of Cleveland, Texas. At the time he worked for a security company contracted by the Walmart. Marks called Houston police for backup. The Harris County District Attorney's Office declined charges against the guys behind the camera, but then pursued Marks.

"Basically trying to report the kids, he reported himself," said KTRK Legal Analyst Joel Androphy.

According to the D-A's Office, Marks didn't have the credentials to represent himself this way. At the time he was only a reserve officer for the now-defunct Kenefick Police Department. He was charged with a private security act violation, essentially working as a security officer without holding a security officer commission and Wednesday a jury found him guilty. That means no more work in law enforcement, according to the DA's Office.

When commissioned as a security officer, Androphy says proper licensing is important.

"You cant keep the law and order if you don't know how to do it," Androphy said.

Marks defense attorney, Brian Coyne, says they plan to appeal the conviction. Marks was given one year probation and had to give up all police licenses.

A Walmart spokesman told Eyewitness News they no longer use contract security guards at the store where this happened. null
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