'Business as usual' at commissioner's meeting day after FBI search

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by GARY REAVES and CYNTHIA VEGA

WFAA

Posted on June 28, 2011 at 7:50 AM

Updated Tuesday, Jun 28 at 4:36 PM

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DALLAS - While the Dallas County Commissioner's Court meeting went on without any talk of John Wiley Price's investigation, Commissioner Mike Cantrell told News 8 he is considering filing a suit against Commissioner Maurine Dickey for "falsely stating" that the FBI searched his office.

Dickey, a longtime Republican rival, said she "didn't know whether to dance or sing" upon hearing news of the federal investigation of Price.

For several hours Monday, FBI agents searched the first two floors of the Dallas County Administration Building in downtown Dallas. Access to the building was limited to employees and visitors of the Sixth Floor Museum. Price's office was the main focus of the search.

Price promised "business as usual" at Tuesday's commissioner meeting, and that was the case during its two hours. However, after the meeting convened, Price was swarmed with questions from reporters about the case.

"It mentions everything under the Title 18 U.S. Code, except child rape," he said of the broad reasons cited for the probe. "You know, they just cast a net."

The commissioner, whose home and offices were searched by FBI agents Monday, left his North Oak Cliff home at about 5:30 a.m. He said his attorneys have advised him not to talk, and that Tuesday's meeting would be business as usual.

When asked about his numerous vehicles, Price said it has been time and hard work that has led to his ability to own the cars.

"Twenty-six years in office at probably over $100,000 a year, that's $150,000," he said. "I mean, I should have at least a car or two."

The home of Price's executive assistant, Dapheny Fain, was also searched Monday in DeSoto, as was the house of his primary political consultant Kathy Nealy in Uptown.

Price faces no charges, but FBI search warrants cited possible violations from theft and bribery concerning federally funded programs to tax evasion and money laundering.

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