FBI investigates Constable Curry for reported civil rights violation
By 08/10/2000 00:00:00
Special to the Ellis County Press
WAXAHACHIE - The Federal Bureau of Investigation reportedly is looking into a possible civil rights violation involving Ellis County Constable Perry 'Bubba' Curry.
Sources close to the investigation report it involves the 1995 arrest of Steven Howard Raney, one of Curry's reserve deputy constables.
According to information received, the FBI initially contacted the Ellis County District Attorney's Office last summer and requested all files on the arrest of Raney and another deputy constable, Rodney Ramsey.
Allegations have been made saying Constable Curry assaulted Raney prior to the deputy giving a formal statement. Although the allegations have not been substantiated at the press time, the FBI has interviewed several witnesses.
District Attorney Joe Grubbs told the Ellis County Press he was not aware of any FBI investigation and did not remember his office providing any files. 'I don't think the FBI is looking into it, not at all,' Grubbs said.
The DA did say his office has heard of the allegation, investigated it and 'determined that there is not a basis of truth.'
Constable Curry said he was 'advised not to comment.'
According to motions filed by Raney's attorneys one year ago, Constable Curry physically assaulted Raney before giving his statement. Raney's attorneys also claim both Curry and former Waxahachie police officer Mathew Boyden has taken the statement from Raney while he was heavily under the influence of cocaine.
Other motions filed on Raney's behalf assert both Curry and Boyden knew Raney was unable to keep his story straight at the time of questioning due to cocaine intoxication. Raney allegedly kept changing the times, dates and facts of a reported theft of cocaine.
The supporting motions state the officers had to re-start the statement four times before receiving the one used in the indictments of Raney and Ramsey.
'I talked to everybody who was there, who had first-hand knowledge of what happened,' Grubbs said of Curry's session with Raney.
Raney originally was convicted of tampering with physical evidence and received a 10-year sentence. Raney's attorney filed with the Count of Appeals and won on the grounds of judicial misconduct and poor representation.
The Ellis County District Attorney's office appealed to the Court of Criminal Appeals but lost on a 5-4 vote to have the case heard, according to Grubbs. Raney's case was remanded to Ellis County for a new sentencing phase. Grubbs, though, termed it a new trial.
In April 1999, the DA's office gave Raney a 10-year probated sentence.
The FBI investigation reportedly has entered a second phase. Agents conducting the investigation, which is now in its 10th month, have interviewed several Ellis County officials.