BURNET, Texas - Former Cedar Park Police Chief Sean Mannix has turned down the same position in Burnet, Burnet's Mayor Crista Bromley has confirmed.
There had been controversy over Mannix taking over the position over his handling of the Greg Kelley case. A crowd of people prayed alongside Kelley outside the Burnet Police Department, hours after Mannix was set to be sworn in as the new police chief in Burnet.
“Accountability is the name of the game. That is what we want now, it is not about me anymore, it is about the next person,” said Kelley. “I think God has put it on my heart and I have an obligation to make sure that this doesn’t happen in Burnet.”
Former Leander High School football star Kelley had been convicted of two counts of super aggravated sexual assault of a child back in 2014 and served three years of a 25-year sentence before the Court of Criminal Appeals overturned the conviction In November 2019.
Kelley was released on bond in 2017 after he was granted a Writ of Habeas Corpus hearing where his attorney and the Texas Rangers presented new evidence. That evidence included two additional possible suspects who had not been previously investigated for the crimes.
The Court of Criminal Appeals in their ruling said that the Cedar Park police's investigation was "bare bones."
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“What we went through is something nobody in America should go through. We live in the greatest country in the world, we have rights and we have liberties mine were violated,” Kelley said. “I do not want anyone elses violated either and it would’ve happened with this man as your chief.”
After Kelley was declared innocent, his family and supporters called on the city of Cedar Park to hold former Police Chief Sean Mannix and Detective Chris Dailey accountable for their role in Kelley’s wrongful conviction. Mannix retired from Cedar Park PD in February after serving seven years.
A crowd of Greg Kelley’s family, supporters and Burnet citizens planned to protest outside of Mannix’s swearing-in ceremony until they learned he stepped down.
“We want to make it clear he is not eligible for rehire in any city, in any state, he cannot be in a position of authority, he has lost the public’s trust,” said Jake Brydon, a longtime friend and supporter of Kelley. “If it can happen to Greg Kelley, let me tell you it can happen to anybody.”
CItizens of Burnet who attended the planned protest thanked Kelley. Crystal Buggs felt inspired to share her own story of injustice.
“Prison is something that is a horrible, horrible place and you do not wish it on your worst enemy,” said Buggs. “To be innocent and to go to prison is another story. It changes, prison changes people for eternity. Us as Burnet cannot continue to sit here and say it is not our business, we cannot turn our head and not speak up. Because not speaking up can change one person's life forever.”
Mannix has not responded to FOX 7’s request for comment.
Last week, Cedar Park Mayor Corbin Van Arsdale and City Councilmember Mike Guevara sent a letter to Williamson County District Attorney Shawn Dick, asking for an investigation into Dailey's actions in the Greg Kelley case.
Van Arsdale says in a Facebook post that he and Guevara filed a complaint last night concerning Dailey possibly committing aggravated perjury, a third-degree felony, during a 2017 habeas hearing.