FORT WORTH — A former police chief from a small central Texas town was behind bars in Dallas on Tuesday night, charged with seven felonies in Tarrant and Dallas counties that range from promoting prostitution to engaging in organized crime.
Michael Meissner, a 39-year-old described by some as a "gypsy" officer for holding more than a dozen law enforcement jobs in the past 18 years, remained in jail on a $1.5 million bond, Dallas County Jail records show.
He was most recently police chief in Little River-Academy, a town of fewer than 2,000 south of Temple, Texas.
Meissner was arrested at his home in Arlington, a suburb midway between Dallas and Fort Worth, Monday after a months-long investigation into whether he was making harassing phone calls developed into a case of child pornography, Combine police Sgt. Brian Robinson said. Combine is a city of fewer than 2,000 in Dallas and Kaufman counties.
"When this started off, we were investigating harassing and threatening phone calls," Robinson said. "We ended up ... discovering things that led us to believe that several sexual crimes were occurring."
Seven charges against Meissner were pending Tuesday night. From Tarrant County, the charges were aggravated promotion of prostitution, sexual performance by a child, possession or promotion of child pornography and engaging in organized criminal activity, Robinson said.
From Dallas County, the charges were misuse of official information, organized criminal activity and obstruction or retaliation, Dallas County Jail records show.
"We will move forward with getting the cases followed up as prosecutors go through the process," Robinson said. "We're hoping that ... some of his other victims come forward."
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