ENNIS — Ennis police have arrested Ennis City Commissioner Steven C. Durbin on a state jail felony charge of improper photography or video recordings.
An affidavit for arrest warrant alleges female employees at Durbin’s dental practice found a wireless color video camera in their changing room.
A warrant was issued Friday for Durbin’s arrest. Accompanied by his attorney, Mark Griffith, Durbin turned himself in to police and was arraigned by Justice of the Peace Jackie Miller Jr. on a $1,000 bond.
“The accusations are absolutely false and our firm has been hired,” Griffith said. “This will either be dismissed or 12 good citizens of Ellis County will hear the truth of this case.”
A copy of the arrest warrant obtained by the Daily Light under the Freedom of Information Act indicates Police Chief John Erisman was contacted Aug. 16 by a reporting person (name redacted) who advised he had been told by his wife, who is an employee at the dental practice, that the female employees “had discovered that Durbin had been videotaping them while they were changing clothes in a changing room in his offices.”
According to the affidavit, Erisman interviewed (name redacted) who said one of the employees located the camera.
“Employees later confronted Dr. Durbin and he admitted to making the video recordings,” according to the affidavit, which also states, “The admission was recorded using a digital audio recorder.”
The affidavit, filed by detective Sgt. Mike Hopson and signed by Justice of the Peace Bill Woody, indicates the camera was released to Erisman and logged into evidence.
“He’s got 30 years practice as a dentist,” Griffith said. “These accusations are absolutely false.”
Durbin was booked into Wayne McCollum Detention Center, where he posted bond and was released.
“The investigation is continuing,” said police Lt. Ron Roark, who would not comment as to the circumstances allegedly involved.
Roark did say an evidentiary warrant was executed Friday at the office building where Durbin maintains his dentistry practice
The investigation is being handled by the Ennis Police Department in coordination with the Ellis County and District Attorney’s Office, Roark said.
Durbin has represented Ward 5 on the city commission since May 2000. Prior to that, he served several terms on the city’s planning and zoning commission.
According to the State Board of Dental Examiners’ Web site, Durbin graduated in 1983 from Baylor and maintains a private practice in general dentistry. His license has active status, according to the Web site, which indicates he has had a disciplinary action.
No informaiton relating to the disciplinary action is available on the Web site.
The Daily Light has filed a written request for any information relating to that action.
E-mail JoAnn at email@example.com