Criminal JusticeFederalIssuesLocal NewsTaxes & SpendingSan Angelo Police Chief Who Accepted Bribes for His Band Gets 15 Years in Prison

A jury convicted the 52-year-old former police chief on charges of bribery and honest services mail fraud.
August 15, 2022
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A former San Angelo police chief who accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes, some of which he used to fund his part-time music gig, was sentenced to more than 15 years in federal prison.

U.S. District Judge James Wesley Hendrix sentenced 52-year-old Tim Vasquez on August 5, per a news release by the Department of Justice (DOJ). He was indicted in January 2020.

In 2007, Vasquez began accepting bribes from a radio systems vendor named Dailey & Wells Communications. Over eight years, he accepted $8,000 annually after an initial bribe of $10,000, according to the DOJ. The scheme lasted until the city granted Daily & Wells another multi-million dollar contact in 2015. The bribes continued even after Vasquez found out in November 2016 that he was under investigation by the federal government.

Before the city council awarded the vendor a second contract, the police chief urged the city’s IT manager to go around the bidding process by using a public safety loophole in Texas law, according to prosecutors.

The DOJ stated that a great deal of the money went directly to Vasquez’s cover band “Funky Munky,” which received about $175,000.

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“Dailey & Wells and its affiliates also provided him tickets for luxury suites at Dallas Cowboys and San Antonio Spurs games, tickets for a luxury suite at Journey concert, and free use of a luxury condominium at Alteza Condos in San Antonio,” the news release said.

In March, a jury convicted Vasquez on charges of honest services mail fraud and “receipt of a bribe by an agent of an organization receiving federal funds.”

City council members testified that they were not aware of the financial relationship between Vasquez and the vendor. Ethics guidelines and state law required Vasquez to disclose the “business relationship” he had with Dailey & Wells, per the DOJ.

“Law enforcement officers, particularly those in leadership positions, should be bastions of integrity. By accepting bribes, Mr. Vasquez defiled his badge,” U.S. Attorney Chad Meacham said. “The Justice Department is determined to root out public corruption wherever we find it. Our citizens deserve honest public servants.”

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Hayden Sparks

Hayden Sparks is a senior reporter for The Texan and a lifelong resident of the Lone Star State. He has coached competitive speech and debate and has been involved in politics since a young age. One of Hayden's favorite quotes is by Sam Houston: "Texas has yet to learn submission to any oppression, come from what source it may."