Robert Chody is a United States Army veteran, a law enforcement officer and a lottery-made millionaire. He and his three siblings were young when their father died.
When Chody was a teenager, his mother became involved with an abusive man. One night, police responded after the abusive man hit her and twin brother.
“I’ll never forget the feeling of security and safety I felt that night,” Chody told the Austin American-Statesman. “I knew I would dedicate my career to law enforcement, from that night forward.”
Chody is also a Texas National Guard veteran and a Republican. Here are 13 more things about him:
- He has a twin brother.
- He married Beverly Chody in 1969. They have three daughters and one son.
- In 1996, he moved to Williamson County, Texas, United States with his wife and their four children. In the same year, he joined the Austin Police Department.
- When he put Marcus Dewayne Frank, an African-American teen born in 1983, in a full nelson on August 28, 1998, the latter had an epileptic seizure. When Frank was helped by his mother Choyce Perkins, she was knocked to the ground by his fellow Austin Police Department officer Jerry Sullivan.
- On behalf of Frank, Perkins filed a lawsuit against him and Sullivan accusing them of excessive use of force, false arrest without probable cause, malicious prosecution and illegal search and seizure. He filed for Qualified Immunity, which was denied on March 28, 2001, days after he and Beverly won $85 million with a Texas Lottery ticket. The case was settled on April 25, 2001. He resigned from Austin Police Department in June 2001.
- He earned his associate degree in general studies at Liberty University.
- After successfully challenging then incumbent Precinct 1 constable Gary Griffin with 57 percent of the primary vote in the Republican primary in March 2008, he as elected to office in November 2008 without Democratic opposition. He was reelected to a second four-year term unopposed both in the primary and general elections in 2012.
- From 2011 to 2013, he attended American Military University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in criminal justice.
- He attended the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy in 2013.
- In September 2016, he organized a Police Lives Matter march in Austin, Texas.
- He took office as the Williamson County Sheriff on January 1, 2017.
- He appeared in A&E show “Live P.D.” During a taping of the reality show, the in-custody death of African-American man Javier Ambler on March 28, 2019 was recorded but it was never aired on television and all footage from the scene was destroyed, KXAN reported. The network told KVUE that it “no longer retained the unaired footage after learning that the investigation had concluded.”
- He was 49 years old when he was arrested on September 28, 2020 on evidence tampering charges in the case of Ambler. He was booked into the Williamson County Jail but was released immediately after he posted a $10,000 bond. He was accused of destroying or concealing audio and video footage that showed his deputies pursuing and using force on the African-American man whose death was ruled a homicide.
(This is a developing story. More details will be added soon.)