HOUSTON – A man has been arrested and charged in connection with multiple illegal dumping cases across the greater Houston area.
Darryl Watson, 59, was charged with illegal dumping after authorities said they were able to connect him with a case from Dec. 27, 2019, out of Sugar Land.
According to Harris County Precinct 1 Constable Alan Rosen, a city code enforcement officer caught several people dumping tires in an alleyway behind a business in the 12900 block of West Bellfort Avenue.
There was also another case where three men were arrested for dumping hundreds of tires in the 14600 block of Old Humble Road, Rosen said. In a third instance that was caught on video, three men were caught dumping tires in the 11200 block of Van Archer.
Watson -- who is currently on parole after serving 10 years in prison for similar crimes -- was identified as the man who orchestrated those operations after further investigation, Rosen said.
According to Rosen, Watson would charge $4 per tire to go pick up the tires from a business and dispose of them. However, instead of properly disposing of the tires, he would steal keys to UHaul trucks or use a trailer of some sort and pay people to go pick up the tires from local businesses before illegally dumping them, Rosen said.
Rosen said thousands of tires were dumped by Watson or someone he hired over the course of the six-month investigation.
"At Precinct One we investigate environmental crimes county-wide," Rosen said. "Dumping tires like this is not only a blight on our neighborhoods but is a threat to the public health as it creates breeding grounds for mosquitoes after a rain. We take these cases seriously and will not stand for those who treat our neighborhoods and our neighbors with such disrespect."
It usually costs about $8 to $10 per tire to properly dispose of them and about $11 to $15 for a truck tire, Rosen said.
Rosen urged business owners to keep accurate records when they dispose of tires and to make sure the person taking them has a permit. If a tire can be traced back to the business, the owners could face civil or criminal charges, Rosen said.
Authorities are still searching for the other three men seen dumping tires in the video. Anyone with information is asked to contact Precinct 1 at 832-927-1567 or Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS (8477).