Williamson County commissioners file lawsuit against Sheriff Robert Chody for continued 'Live PD' filming

Williamson County commissioners file lawsuit against Sheriff Robert Chody in 'Live PD' debacle May 19. (Ali Linan/Community Impact Newspaper)
Williamson County commissioners file lawsuit against Sheriff Robert Chody in 'Live PD' debacle May 19. (Ali Linan/Community Impact Newspaper)

Williamson County commissioners file lawsuit against Sheriff Robert Chody in 'Live PD' debacle May 19. (Ali Linan/Community Impact Newspaper)

The Williamson County Commissioners Court vote 4-0 to issue a lawsuit against Williamson County Sheriff Robert Chody for continuing to allow “Live PD” to film after the court ordered him to stop.

The court will issue a cease and desist to Chody which requires the immediate end of all “Live PD” filming in the county, attorney Sean Breen told Community Impact Newspaper.

“It's not about what he's doing currently with ‘Live PD,’ other than he's doing it when the commissioners court made the decision based on input from the people in the county, that it's not in the best interest of the county,” Breen said. “Once that decision was made, [Chody] doesn't have the right to go out behind the back of the commissioner's court and try to undo their decision.”

The court’s approved motion is to file a lawsuit against Chody, in his official capacity as Williamson County Sheriff and in his individual capacity, in relation to his unauthorized acts of contracting with Big Fish Entertainment, LLC for the use Williamson County facilities, vehicles and property for the purpose of filming, producing and/or publishing “Live PD;” and to further authorize the joinder of any necessary parties and the addition of any other claims that may become necessary in the future, it read.

The lawsuit will be executed by Howry Breen & Herman LLP and the Law Office of Randy Leavitt whom the commissioner voted to hire May 5 to handle all “Live PD” legal matters.

Issues arose in late April, after the court was notified that Chody entered into a contract with Big Fish Entertainment to begin filming “Live PD” once again, even after the court voted to terminate that contract in August.

As of May 19, Breen said “Live PD” filming was still occurring.

Breen said if Chody does not comply with the cease and desist, the commissioners will ask the district court to enforce the order.

“This lawsuit is about holding a sheriff accountable for entering into a contract when he didn't have the authority to contract,” Breen said. “His job is sheriff, not TV producer [and] not handling the business of the county, that's the business of the commissioner's court.”

Williamson County Judge Bill Gravell has recused himself from all matters related to "Live PD" since April.

By Ali Linan
Ali Linan began covering Georgetown for Community Impact Newspaper in 2018. Her reporting focuses on education and Williamson County. Ali hails from El Paso and graduated from Syracuse University in 2017.


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