Does the Texas DPS director have a persecution complex?

McCraw_Steven_jpg_312x1000_q100If I had any doubts about whether Texas Department of Safety Director Steven McCraw is thin-skinned, he managed to alleviate those doubts over the weekend.  According to an email that was forwarded to me this afternoon, Col. McCraw is quite annoyed that reporters won’t write stories the way he wants them written.

Last Thursday, Jeremy Schwartz and Eric Dexheimer of the Austin American-Statesman blogged about how Col. McCraw and DPS leaders complained to legislators about negative media coverage and tried to head off critical coverage with their own alternate versions of reality.  According to the email that was forwarded to me this afternoon, Col. McCraw responded to that blog the following day with a blast email to all DPS employees:

Some news organizations recently published stories about the Department that included inaccurate information, and information taken out of context, completely omitted, or significantly mischaracterized. Our media and communications team worked ahead of time to educate the reporters who were writing these stories by providing a significant amount of information about the issues they were questioning.  Unfortunately, the resulting articles did not reflect all of the facts that they were provided, and consequently, the articles grossly misrepresented these issues to their readers.Read more

Texas DPS director calls Snoop Dogg a “dope smoking cop hater”

Col. McCrankypantsAccording to documents released today by the Texas Department of Public Safety, DPS director Steven McCraw personally initiated the reprimand of Trooper Billy Spears after Spears was photographed with rapper Snoop Dogg, whom McCraw described as a “dope smoking cop hater.” Meanwhile, other documents raise more questions than answers about DPS’s use of facial recognition software (more on that below).

In a March 21, 2015 email, Spears’s immediate supervisor, Sgt. Michael Sparks, explained that Spears allowed himself to be photographed with Snoop at the request of the Doggfather’s assistant, and that Spears and other troopers had previously been photographed with “Robert Duvall, Cee Lo Green, Fred Armistead, Rob Zombie, Shaquille O’Neal and others” while working backstage at the SXSW concert in Austin.

Sgt. Sparks’s email was forwarded up the chain of command to Col. McCraw, who responded as follows at 11:37 a.m. on a Sunday morning:

Apparently he would rather work the convention while on a week’s vacation to earn additional money rather than take an additional tour on the border.  He must not understand that he was being lampooned by a dope smoking cop hater which reflects very poorly upon the Department.

Wow. So this is the kind of emergency issue that keeps our top cop awake on nights and weekends. I’m glad to know we have our priorities straight. … Read more