Business as usual following Upshur County commissioner's arrest

GILMER/UPSHUR COUNTY (KYTX) - It was business as usual Monday in Upshur County after a wild weekend at one county commissioner's property.

Texas Parks and Wildlife officers arrested Precinct 3 Commissioner Lloyd Crabtree and his son, Todd Crabtree, Saturday night.

The Upshur County District Attorney's office says the two held a game warden hostage at gunpoint.

Lloyd Crabtree tells CBS 19 he is getting a lawyer, but will not go into detail about the incident.

Former county Republican Party Chairman Ken Ambrose has known the Crabtree family for years.

"For a stranger to come walking out on their property, ya know, I would be concerned about seeing somebody strange," Ambrose said.

A Texas Parks and Wildlife official says the game warden was doing a routine check of hunters on Crabtree's property when he ran across Lloyd and his son.

State law says game wardens have full authority to check any public or private property where any hunting or fishing occurs.

But Ambrose says it would be strange to see anyone you didn't know on your property.

"I'd like to know who our game warden is because I'd like to be able to call him from time to time when I hear gunshots near my house and have someone overhere hunting when they're not supposed to be hunting," Ambrose said. "But, I don't know who he is. Do you know who he is? Do you know who he is? I've never seen this guy."

People we talked to Monday say they are aware of game wardens' authority in Texas. They also say their reaction might have been the same as Crabtree's.

"Most of the people say if they were out hunting on their own property and someone pulled up, they would pull a gun too," Upshur County resident Peggy LaGrone said.

Added Ambrose, "Game wardens have the ultimate authority."

Crabtree and his son have been charged with aggravated assault on a public servant.

The district attorney says more charges could be coming. Meanwhile, County Judge Dean Fowler says Crabtree's arrest will not disrupt county operations, and Crabtree is still serving as commissioner.

"Not in any way," Fowler said. "The county will continue to operate."

Crabtree and his son remain out of jail each on $40,000 bond.


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