PRESS RELEASE FROM MONTGOMERY COUNTY PRECINCT 2 CONSTABLE GENE DEFOREST
Information Related to GA-29
The Montgomery County Precinct 2 Constable’s Office will take NO actions to enforce the July 2, 2020 Texas Governor’s Office Executive Order GA29 regarding the mandatory use of face masks and facial coverings.
This order includes specific language prohibiting law enforcement from detaining, arresting, or confining to jail as a means to enforce the order. This language strips law enforcement of the necessary tools to enforce compliance with the law.
This language included in the Governor’s order would subject our agency, and Montgomery County as a whole, to civil liability for even speaking to a person about this order, as that could be construed or misconstrued as detention. Additionally, holding someone for the purpose of issuing a citation related to a fine is a legally defined detention under current Texas Law.
The Constable’s Office must consider the intent of the Texas Constitution in regards to how laws of the land are passed and enforced in this state. Normal legislative precedents demand that law enforcement only enforce laws and statutes that are the product of the legislative process or the product of regulatory authorities authorized by the legislature. The further removed we become from this process, the more liability and responsibility we incur as an agency.
The Constable’s Office does not make this statement as any disrespect to Governor Abbott and we encourage all citizens to take reasonable precautions in their own life to mitigate possible exposure to the coronavirus.
Please be responsible as you celebrate this great holiday weekend commemorating the freedoms and liberties that we enjoy as a nation.
Happy 4th of July!