WHITEWRIGHT — The Whitewright City Council reassigned Beau Heistand from chief of the city's police department to a patrolman at its Tuesday night meeting.
After the council reconvened following an executive session that lasted more than two hours, a motion was put forward for the action and it was approved unanimously. The action was effective immediately, and the council named Sgt. Rick Webber as the interim police chief.
"It had nothing to do with Tom Bean issues, we had interdepartmental issues with other officers," Whitewright Mayor Jeremiah Looney said.
On July 25, Heistand issued a news release in reference to a traffic stop from the previous Saturday. The release announced the firing of a Whitewright officer after the officer did not arrest Tom Bean City Council member Ben Vincent who was suspected of driving while intoxicated.
During the closed session, Whitewright Police officers, one by one, were called to a separate room to speak to the council.
Looney said the city had to make a change as there were issues with the department's leadership.
"This was already coming down the line," Looney said.
Looney said the city will be accepting applications for the chief position. Heistand has been chief of the police department for about 13 months, he said.
"We're just hoping to take another step in the right direction for the town," Looney said.