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Top elected official in tiny Texas county arrested for cattle theft

Top elected official in tiny Texas county arrested for cattle theft
Judge Skeet Jones, the top elected official in Texas' Loving County, was one of four people arrested Friday and charged with cattle theft. File Photo by Bill Greenblat/UPI | License Photo

May 21 (UPI) -- The top elected official in a Texas county was among four people arrested in a cattle theft probe, authorities announced.

A special ranger with the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association confirmed Loving County Judge Skeet Jones was arrested Friday alongside Cody Williams, Jonathon Alvarado and Leroy Medlin.

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The four men stand accused of picking up estray cattle and selling them. Jones and Williams were charged with theft of three head of cattle and organized crime. Alvarado was charged with theft of one head of cattle and organized crime. Medlin, a former sheriff's deputy, was charged with organized crime.

Jeremy Fuchs, a spokesman for the cattle raisers association, said the investigation, which began about a year ago, is ongoing and could lead to further charges.

All four suspects were bonded out Friday night.

Jones has served as the top elected official in Loving County, the least populated county in the contiguous United States, since 2007. He collects an annual salary of $133,294.

Loving county, which encompasses about 671 square miles, has a population 57 as of the most recent U.S. Census Bureau estimate.

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