Steve Westbrook of Brenham has stepped down as the executive director of the Sheriffs’ Association of Texas (SAT) amid accusations of misappropriating organization funds.

Steve Westbrook
(Sheriffs' Association of Texas)

SAT President and Smith County Sheriff Larry Smith announced at a news conference on Thursday that Westbrook was placed on administrative leave on November 17th upon learning of an investigation by the Texas Attorney General’s Office.  The investigation, according to Smith, began after a tip from two SAT employees.

The SAT Board voted on Wednesday to accept Westbrook’s resignation in lieu of termination.  Skylor Hearne was appointed to serve as interim executive director. 

Per his resignation, Westbrook will surrender his peace officer’s license to the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement and pay full restitution as determined by a forensic audit.  His compensation also stopped immediately.

Smith said during the news conference that the accusations were “a shock for every sheriff that knew him” and that integrity “can be lost at the snap of your fingers.” 

The specific amount of funding involved in the investigation was not disclosed by Smith.  However, he did say the amount appeared to be “significant” and that the alleged offense occurred over a long period of time.  He said the forensic audit is expected to go back between 5 to 7 years.

Westbrook started his career in law enforcement at the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office in 1978.  He came to Washington County after being appointed in 1985 as special Texas Ranger with the Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association.  He had served as SAT’s executive director since 1998. 

Westbrook also served for 17 years on the Blinn Board of Trustees and was named to the College’s Hall of Honor in 2021.  He has been involved with organizations like the Washington County Fair, Brenham Maifest, Graham Lodge #20 and Brenham Shrine Club.  He was also one of the founding members of the Cowboy Church of Brenham.

KWHI is attempting to reach Westbrook for comment.

What’s your Reaction?


  1. Yikes, my heart breaks for Steve and his family. The circumstances seem bad, but as Jesus said, “Let he who is without sin throw the first stone”. I will not be picking up any stones and encourage others to do the same. I also believe that we are called to pray for him and help to restore him. This does not mean there are not serious consequences, but this is a man who had been very active in our community and contributed much good. Praying for Steve and his family!

  2. Interesting. The hipocracy. Everyone should be considered innocent until proven guilty. He didn’t afford that right to our community members He pre judged and took action against. He wouldn’t have surrendered his badge so easily if there wasn’t something to this.

  3. I have known this man and family pretty much my whole life. What ever happened to innocent until proven guilty. Don’t judge me until you have walked a mile in my shoes! Maybe you need to look at that plank in your own eye.

  4. With any luck, this case will remind the Sheriff’s Association of Texas that there is such a thing as a DO NOT CALL LIST, and that there are actual laws, passed by popularly elected politicians that allow citizens to opt out of and be free from unwanted phone solicitations. I back law enforcement with my taxes. If I’m going to support a state-funded employee above what I contribute in taxes, MY MONEY WILL GO TO TEACHERS.

  5. Steve Westbrook is an honest and trustworthy man!! He is being ambushed by crooked politics and is being set up by someone who wants his job!! He doesn’t deserve this garbage!!

    1. Just curious how you came to the conclusion that he’s being setup? I find it strange you say that when reading the article he agreed to willfully surrender his state license and also pay restitution. I mean if this was me and I was innocent why would I agree to surrender my state license and pay restitution if I didn’t do anything wrong. I would fight it and not agree to pay an organization money and give up my license. Just seems strange to agree to those things if I’m innocent.

    2. This is an interesting perspective. He has not been charged of a crime yet. Reading all of the available facts, he resigned in lieu of termination and voluntarily entered a restitution agreement based upon the audited findings of his malfeasances. Hardly sounds like a political hit. While felony charges may be filled later by authorities, and his innocent until proven guilty rights then would come into play. In the absence of his denial, and in light of his voluntary resignation and restitution agreement it seems he is accepting his responsibility for his financial malfeasances.

    3. I agree with Susan misappropriation of anything is a vague charge. Let’s see been there on that job 20 plus years is 60 plus years old conservative Christian man yep he had to go. So most likely political. Well the good news is he has the support of lots of people in this county. We willing be praying for the Westbrook family.

    4. I agree with you 100%..Steve Westbrook is a good man and has helped me through some very though times in my life and knowing that man my entire life I know this is not true..there is something more and yet wrong about these allegations.

  6. Why is the media jumping thru hoops to compromise Mr. Westbrook’s reputation because of allegations that may or may not have merit? This is a really nice family man and responsible citizen of this county and should be given the benefit of doubt till proven otherwise. So don’t cast stones unless you’re without sin yourself. I will be praying for the Westbrook family regardless because its the right thing to do.

  7. This is very disappointing to hear, But Innocent until proven Guilty So let him have his day in court and see where it goes. If Guilty let justice be served, If innocent Let that be proven, Not up to me to judge.

    1. Read the article again! It appears that Mr. Westbrook’s “guilt or innocence” has already been established. Per the article, Mr. Westbrook has agreed to pay full restitution as determined by the forthcoming forensic audit.

    2. If he agreed to pay restitution, there may not be any criminal charges to try him for… meaning no day in court. To me if he resigned and agreed to pay money back, he is admitting guilt.

    3. Interesting. The hipocracy. Everyone should be considered innocent until proven guilty. He didn’t afford that right to our community members He pre judged and took action against. He wouldn’t have surrendered his badge so easily if there wasn’t something to this.

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