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State of Texas
Miss Galveston 2014
Texas Department of Public Safety
News Release
Friday, August 26, 2011

Public Safety Commission commends Colonel L. Beckworth for over 33 years of service Congratulates Trooper James Hicks

At today’s Public Safety Commission meeting, the Commission commended Colonel Lamar Beckworth for his over 33 years of service at the Department of Public Safety.  Public Safety Chairman Allan Polunsky said, “Colonel Beckworth truly embodies the spirit of excellence of the Department. His leadership and his talents will be missed.”

Colonel Lamar Beckworth joined the Texas Department of Public Safety on May 24, 1978, and was assigned to the Driver License Service in Irving after graduating from the DPS Academy.  He was assigned to the Highway Patrol Service in Kilgore for five years.  He served as Sergeant, Highway Patrol Service, in Brownfield; Lieutenant, Highway Patrol Service, in Garland; and Major, Texas Highway Patrol, in Lubbock.  He was promoted to Assistant Chief of the Texas Highway Patrol Division on September 1, 2002.  He was appointed Interim Assistant Director on September 1, 2008; Interim Director on May 6, 2009, and appointed as the Department’s first Deputy Director on August 1, 2009.

The Commission approved a motion to formally confer upon Colonel Beckworth the title of Director of the Department, for the time period he served as Interim Director. This allows Colonel Beckworth to join the ranks as one of the 13 Directors that has led the Department during its 76 year history.

The Commission also honored Trooper James Hicks of Waco for conducting a traffic stop that led to finding over $1.5 million in jewelry. As a sign of thanks, Steve Konetzke of Roach, Howard, Smith & Barton, on behalf of Jewelers Mutual Insurance, presented a check for $5,000 in Trooper Hicks’ name to the DPS Memorial Fund.

On May 16, 2011, Trooper Hicks conducted a routine traffic stop on a vehicle. Trooper Hicks observed several indicators of criminal activity during his interview with both the driver and passenger.  After receiving consent to search, Trooper Hicks found a black nylon bag full of assorted jewelry and Rolex watches. On May 20, 2011, after obtaining a list of items stolen from a McAllen jewelry store, it was determined that the jewelry and watches were authentic and valued at $1.5 million. The property, which had been taken during a daytime robbery in McAllen, was returned to the FBI and McAllen authorities. 

The Commission heard a presentation regarding the rules for the Capitol Access Pass. The rules will be available for the public to review in the Texas Register.

The Commission also approved the use of state seized funds to implement additional measures for the Department’s headquarters security plan.




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