ROCKWALL – The Rockwall County Commissioners Court voted unanimously Friday to replace a controversial flagpole outside the courthouse.
In February, without consultation, Commissioner Jerry Wimpee had the U.S. flagpole cut down to make it the same height as the Texas flag. Wimpee says he took action to come into compliance with flag code, as he saw it.
Earlier this week, a special prosecutor ordered Wimpee to pay about $3,300 for a replacement flagpole, though he did not admit any guilt. The Commissioners today voted to approve the purchase and installation of the new flagpole.
“It was a bit of an insult, the decision, because he was not charged with a crime,” said Connie Christensen, who was instrumental in creating the veterans memorial, of which the flag is a part. “He committed a crime. And if I had done that or you had done that we would have been charged with a crime."
Wimpee says he is recovering from pneumonia and did not attend Friday's hearing. His actions drew protests and scrutiny from retired members of the armed forces who thought his actions were an insult to their service and their county.
Some, now, appear ready to forgive.
“Of course I forgive him. I believe it’s important to forgive people for their offenses, so yes,” said Tom Galli, Retired Army Lt. Colonel.
According the County Judge, the new flag will be installed in about two weeks.