TYLER – Authorities have arrested 17 Smith County parents who allegedly violated court orders requiring them to pay child support. The roundup was conducted Friday by Smith County Sheriff J.B. Smith, with assistance from the Tyler Police Department, Smith County Adult Probation, the U.S. Marshals Service, Pct. 2 Constable Andy Dunklin, Pct. 3 Constable Jimmy Blackmon, and Pct. 4 Constable John G. Smith. Friday’s sweep comes on the heels of a similar roundup in Harrison County; both efforts were in conjunction with the Texas Attorney General’s Child Support Division. The sweeps focused on parents who were the subjects of arrest warrants for alleged contempt of court.
After holding a 4:30am briefing at the Smith County Emergency Operations Center, Sheriff Smith dispatched teams of law enforcement officers to locate and arrest the parents before they had a chance to leave their homes for the day. Child Support Division investigators aided the sheriff by providing logistical assistance to locate missing parents. Delinquent parents arrested on civil warrants face up to six months in jail.
According to the AG’s office, parents with child support warrants should contact the Smith County Sheriff’s Office. Parents who have fallen behind on their child support payments – but are not subject to warrants for their arrest, should immediately contact the Attorney General’s Child Support Division at 800-252-8014 to make payment arrangements.