A man previously convicted of illegally dumping thousands of used tires across Houston was arrested for allegedly doing the same again, according to the Harris County’s Precinct One Environmental Crimes Division.
Darrell Wayne Watson was arrested again after investigators said surveillance videos caught him unloading tires from a U-Haul van along the streets on the 5200 block of Mayle Street on March 16. According to police officers, he is said to have unloaded more tires in the same location on February 25 and March 18. Investigators said they found a total of 176 tires from 18-wheel tractor units.
MPs said the van was rented by someone else and was reported stolen at the time.
On February 23, Watson pleaded guilty to illegal dumping and was sentenced to eight years of community custody on a deferred plea for a third-degree crime. Watson was wearing an ankle monitor at the time of these new incidents, investigators said.
A deferred decision enables a defendant to avoid trial and conviction if the probation conditions set by the court are met.
“Mr. Watson clearly has no intention of ceasing his illegal activities,” said Alan Rosen, Constable of Precinct One. “Watson has proven he is a repeat offender and that a blow to the wrist will not stop him from getting those dangerous eyesores in our neighborhood. I hope that this time he will be held accountable for his actions that affect the quality of life of those living nearby. “
Watson was charged with the crime of commercial dumping. If convicted, he faces 10 years in prison.
The investigation is still ongoing and charges against others shown in the video are pending.
“We are not only investigating those who are directly involved in this case, but will also file criminal charges against tire manufacturers who have done business with Mr. Watson,” the agency said in a statement.
Those who have witnessed illegal dumping are asked to report the county’s Illegal Dumping Hotline at 832-927-1567. Call 3-1-1 or a county commissioner for cleanup.