HAWKINS (AP/Staff) – A newly elected East Texas mayor has been accused of threatening to ticket and fine a woman $500 daily in a messy yard dispute. Hawkins Mayor William Rogers was arrested Monday on a misdemeanor official oppression charge and freed on $1,000 bond. Fire Marshal Eileen Frazier says the mayor is not authorized to write tickets or issue fines. An arrest affidavit says Rogers stopped at a house July 10 and told resident Candy Palmertree she must clean up her yard or he would ticket and fine her. Code enforcement officials later said the grass did not violate city rules.
According to KETK, the arrest affidavit also stated that Rogers asked Palmertree how much she would sell her portable concession stand in her driveway for. He allegedly told Palmertree she was selling it for too much and would have to remove it and risk any fines for that as well. But code enforcement officials say Palmertree had a permit for the stand. The affidavit additionally says Rogers was blocking Palmertree’s driveway with his car. Next-door neighbor Wanda Finney says the mayor also approached her about her grass — and that she got a citation even though her grass wasn’t even two inches tall. Rogers, who was elected in May, denied wrongdoing. He didn’t immediately return messages Tuesday.