Skip to main content
Press Release

Former Police Chief In Rising Star Indicted

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Texas

Federal Grand Jury Indicts William Kelcy on Theft of Government Property
and Firearm Charges

LUBBOCK, Texas —  A federal grand jury in Lubbock has returned a two-count indictment against the former Chief of the Rising Star Police Department.  William Jason Kelcy, 41, is charged with one count of theft of government property and aiding and abetting and one count of theft of a machine gun and aiding and abetting.  Kelcy is expected to self-surrender in response to a summons and make an initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge E. Scott Frost later this month.  Today’s announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas.

Kelcy was employed as the Chief of Police of the Rising Star Police Department from June 11, 2009 to January 10, 2013.  Rising Star, Texas, is located approximately 55 miles southeast of Abilene, Texas, in southwestern Eastland County.

Under the National Defense Authorization Act, the Defense Logistics Agency is authorized to transfer excess Department of Defense (DOD) property to federal and state law enforcement agencies under what is known as the “1033 Program.”  The program was designed to increase the quality and quantity of equipment for law enforcement agencies by utilizing excess DOD property.

According to Count One of the indictment, during the time he served as police chief, Kelcy, by making false and fraudulent representations about the intended use and/or recipient(s) of equipment, sought and obtained more than $4 million worth of property and equipment from the 1033 Program.  Kelcy fraudulently gave, sold, bartered, or otherwise disposed of the equipment to other law enforcement agencies, officers, and private citizens with no law enforcement responsibilities.  In fact, Kelcy sold, traded, pawned or attempted to sell, trade, pawn, several high-value military surplus items that he fraudulently obtained through the 1033 Program.

Count Two of the indictment alleges that in late June 2012, Kelcy transferred and attempted to transfer a Thompson Ramo Wooldridge M14 machine gun.

An indictment is an accusation by a federal grand jury and a defendant is entitled to the presumption of innocence until or unless proven guilty.  However, upon conviction, each count of the indictment carries a maximum statutory penalty of 10 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.

The Defense Criminal Investigative Service led the investigation with assistance from the City of Eastland, Texas and the Texas Department of Public Safety, which helps administer the 1033 Program throughout the state.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Amanda R. Burch of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Lubbock is in charge of the prosecution.

Updated June 22, 2015