Fate man arrested after assaulting City Council member Skipworth

By J.J. Smith. A long-time City of Fate resident was arrested yesterday by Rockwall County Sheriff’s Department deputies shortly after he allegedly struck Fate City Council member Steve “Skip” Skipworth three times in the face, breaking his sunglasses and leaving a laceration under his left eye.

Thomas Shirey was arrested a few blocks away from the donut shop in downtown Fate where the altercation occurred, said Lt. David Davis.

He was charged with a Class A misdemeanor assault causing bodily injury and taken to the Rockwall County Jail. He was released today after paying a $3,000 bond.

Skipworth said he was “Okay,” when he was contacted at home last evening. He added that he had hired a civil lawyer to handle the matter and therefore could not speak about it.

Shirey has not been able to be contacted.

According to a government official who wishes to remain anonymous, the fight may have something to do with the suicide committed last week by Fate resident Rick Tolbert, whose son said the deceased man was feeling depressed about some code violation citations he had received from the City.

Fate City Manager Vicki Mikel said she was out of town last week and still doesn’t know much about the citations because the code enforcement officer has also been out of town. He is expected back tomorrow at which time she will question him about the citations.

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34 Responses for “Fate man arrested after assaulting City Council member Skipworth”

  1. Rev willy j munson says:

    Would anyone be interested in helping put together a annual 5k run in fate? I thought about calling it the Rick Run?

    It would be a fun event and bring some old friends together every year. Be a great way to remember a great friend. Havent picked a charity yet, but I bet the folks on here could come up with some great ideas.

  2. CHRIS CAUBLE says:

    Did you see the old fire station get tore down last week? Well let me say this don’t be alarmed because
    We are getting a new 1,600,000 dollar new fire station how about that people. Also I’ve lived here a long time and there’s not a lot of fires just wrecks on the highway we need fire and ambulance but we didn’t need to put the citizens’ of fate further in debt it’s bad enough what are federal government is doing let alone our small town.There are about 5000 people in fate do the math that’s about 320 dollars a person that’s crazy!! Also we pay the Rockwall county sheriffs’ department another 200,000 dollars for them to patrol fate and write tickets to generate revenue for fate!!! Give me a break!! They should be patrolling fate anyway because it’s their job in the first place!!!!!Without sucking another 200,000 grand .Also what about the 400,000 dollar grant to fix the old city park that wasn’t 400,000 dollars worth where’s the playground equipment ?and it just keeps getting worse I mean it’s so obvious it makes me sick. We need an audit of the books!! Wake up people we have let this go too far and it’s our own fault for not being responsible and keeping up with these vampires who have hijacked our town! And I’m guilty of it to, but I’ve decided that I’m not going to sit out anymore, it’s time for me to make a stand for what’s right so please fill free to get involved and be at the city council meeting June 7,2010. We need to address these issues before it’s too late. The power of people with knowledge, and humility, honesty and the truth will always prevail as long as you stand your ground!

  3. Richard Johns says:

    Whith all of the people who have left comment’s anonymously, or who left only part of a name tells us the true nature of this City’s governing body as it currently exits. Reward your friends, slander and distroy any one whom opposess you. It should be obvious to any one reading these replies that the concern of retaleation from the Mayor and City Councel is real. What happend to freedom of speech?

    Where is the leadership from Bill Broderick? Did he not sell this town on the idea the he would bring leadership, why has he not said one word on this subject. Why has Bill Broderick our Mayor not publicly repromanded Steve Skipworth for his part in this. Where is the leadership Bill?
    Both Bill Broderick and Steve Skipworth call themselvs Christian men and say they attend church every Sunday. There was nothing Christian about what Steve Skipworth said to Tom. There is nothing Christian in the pain and insults that where inflicted on the Tolbert family, the true friends of the Tolbert family and Tom Shirey. If Steve Skipworth was the Christain man he claims to be then he should go to the Tolbert Family, their Freinds and Tom Shirey and BEG FORGIVENESS.
    However Steve Skipworth dose not have the corage, integrity or character to do so.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Richard, Although I remain anon, I voted for you and intentionally did not vote for any other council members along into 25% of total voters. As a person who has been on the receiving end of the council’s whip, Mr. Tolbert’s passing is an eye opener to many people and their elected council members tactics. I truly believe that if Mr Tolbert was herewith us today, he would be leading this recall if he knew there would be enough people supporting it

  5. Anonymous says:

    This is what happens when good people do nothing, selfish and down right evil people take over.
    It is and old saying all evil needs to triumph is for good people to do nothing.

  6. anonymous says:

    Yes and Amen. One must be carefull when criticizing the Maroy and City Council, you will be targeted. Bill Broderick and his cronies realy do think that they are above the law, after all this is there town, the rest of us just live here. What is so offencive to me is the these want to be king’s call themselves Christians, they go to church every Sunday and as soon as they leave they start there plotting, how they can rob the poeple of Fate, and if you dare to speak out you get your water cut off, or find citations, you will find Bill Broderick’s hired boy the code inforcement officer at your door. What arrogant, sorry, liers and thives, these individualls are, and I am being kind with my words. What I want to know is what gives these City employee’s the right to treat the citizens with contempt, how are they getting away with such rudeness to the people they are supposing to be working for, could it be it is because they believe we are here to serve them. Skippy Worthless is just one off the guttless lap dogs Bill Broderick has, Bill Broderick was recived over $30,000 dollars from the developers, that amount is on record, How much has he and his lap dogs get under the table?? I have this warning for those of you that live down town, The developers and City hall have there eyes on your property and they want it. Tyrants will allways find a pretexst for there tyranny. We the people must stand together, let us work together to dethrone the King’s of Fate.

  7. Richard Johns says:

    Chris you are right!! Julie would be one of there friends that do the dirty work for Bill and HIS CITY COUNCIL. When I ran for Mayor a so called friend Richie Lewis Wrote on a blog the we where close friends, That is a flat out lie, I have not spoken to that PUNK in two years. Myself and Richie Lewis anit friends. I knew when I filed to run against Bill Broderick, that Bill would have Richie bring up my divorce, even though both Richie and Bill have gone threw a divorce. But that is who these people are. Lie number 2, Richie did not plead with me not to run. Lie number 3, Bill Broderick did not lift one finger to bring a school in to Fate, Bill sat on his ass while David Hill and myself did all of the work, Then after all of the work is done Bill Broderick has the nerve to claim credit for the schools, but that is the type of people we are dealing with. When you speak out against these people you are putting a target on your back. In thier minds we are suppose to just stay at home shut up and let them walk all over us, and dont even think about asking any qustions. There is no qustion about it, these people drove that man to take his life and they could care less.

  8. CHRIS CAUBLE says:

    hey julie i see what your trying to do and its not going to work anymore if your refering to my comments well you can address me, ricks passing just opend our eyes to the tactics and scum that serve on the citys so called council that is bought and payed for by outside interest so who ever you are you need to think about what your saying ive earned the right to voice my opinion about the town and the good man that rick was and always will be to the people who new him best. it is a shame that only 197 people voted in the last election ! shame on you for even making those comments whats your last name anyway julie sounds like your the one who has shame.im not going to give you the pleasure or my time on your comment your just a provacature anyway.the city is handling this matter like theyve handled everthing else under the table WHAT WE NEED TO DO IS GET ATTORNEYS TO AUDIT THE BOOKS THATS WHERE WE NEED TO GO WITH THIS I WILL BE ATTENDING EVERY CITY COUNCIL MEETING FOR HERE ON OUT!! SO SEE YOU THERE JULIE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  9. anonymous says:

    RECALL HELL YES, every last one of them. Skippy and Billy are the real COWARDS. Billy is the real thief, he has put more money in his pocket from this town, how much of a cut did he get just from the trash deal. Skippy is not even a real man she has no spine, she has never made a stand for anything.

  10. Julie says:

    Finally someone who makes sense! Mr. Tolbert as I understand it devoted much of his time to the City of Fate and I have no doubt that his deeds did not go unnoticed by our city fathers and current leaders. It appears that he had many friends who loved him and a family that was devoted to him. So how did these blogs go from recognizing a good man and his deeds to slamming any and everything about Fate City Council? Is this really the appropriate forum? Did we not just have an election and weren’t the very council members and mayor that are being slammed here not win? Didn’t all of them but the Mayor run unopposed? Looks like all of you missed your opportunity to voice your concerns at the polls. Shame, Shame on all of you for taking advantage of a great man’s death to throw out your garbage. Come on, re-call election – really. Why not put your energy into something more productive like volunteering for your city. If change is what you want, go about it the right way. Again – shame, shame on all of youl

  11. anonymous says:

    I think it is a sad day when we have citizens taking advantage of a respected man’s death to use as an opportunity to try and bring down a city. I really hope most citizens will not read these items since there are so many unfounded statements involved. Just for instance: The former city secretary that embezzeled monies was – charged and is paying back the money (plus fees & fines). Read the news and the files. According to the law every dollar one is charged for must be backed up by documentation. However, that is not the point. The point is that we have a small group of people that care nothing about the city in which they live. Their only goal in life is to casue trouble. They search for reasons to point blame. If these same people would work as hard to support their city as they do at bad mouthing everyone would be far better off. As the bible says: ‘let he who is without sin cast the first stone’. Rick Tolbert worked hard for the city and he was well respected for his efforts. The actions of 2 grown men should not be a reason for all of the meaningless chatter.

  12. Donna Askew says:

    Great information. Sounds like the citizens do have control. Let’s see that would be November, right?

  13. Anonymous says:

    At this point for a recall, the people would have to wait 6 months from the swear in date to petition for it to remove anyone elected in May! If someone takes the lead I will definitely join the cause. We would need 150 signatures after the affidavit since 30% of the last election is only 60 voters.

  14. anonymous says:

    As a person that has and STILL is being selectively targeted by our City Officials, I agree with all the comments about the Mayor & City Council and City Staff personnel. Our City Charter has provisions stating “HOW TO RECALL AN ELECTED OFFICIAL.” The procudure is outlined on pages 19-21. It only takes ten (10) qualified voters to form a petitioners committee and section 5.02 (1) (B) details all the specifics involved. You can find the Charter on the City website under the “Other Documents” section. We voted for this Charter and I believe that it is time we used it!! A Petetioners Committee can be formed to recall any or ALL of our City Council members. Then we can elect people who are NOT in the pockets of the developers or special interest groups, and who have a heart to truly serve the good citizens of Fate. This current City Council has gone unchecked for too long. They ALL put their policitical signs in Mr. Tolbert’s yard last year when they ran for election (and the “junk cars and high grass” was THERE then and they said NOTHING about it). But NOW after they are in power they treat Mr. Tolbert this way!! I ask you, How would that make YOU feel? They knew that a City employee STOLE at least $8,000.00 of our money and her punishment was “Community Service and court cost” and she was NOT even required to pay back the money she stole from us. But in Mr. Tolbert’s case, he received numerous code violations, an arrest warrant and threaten with jail time for “junk cars and high grass in his yard!!! I guess it’s ok to steal the citizens money without paying it back, but by gosh you better not let your grass get to high or off to jail you can go!!! And while I’m on the money thing, after further investigation, the amount originally reported as STOLEN has grown from $8,000 to over $100,000.00 and our Mayor and City Council and City Staff have ALL closed ranks and remained silent. Ask yourself this question, why has our City leaders who gave this felon a City Proclamation for “GOOD SERVIVE” to our community NOT been more forthcoming with this information? How deep does the theft of our City funds go and who else might be involved? Vicki Mikel went on the record to the RCHBanner and when asked whether our City funds were not being stolen by Mr. Sturgal (another employee hired by our City who stole money from his previous City) and she said NO when she KNEW that all this thievery had taken place. Our Mayor AND the entire City Council needs to be recalled and new leaders chosen to guide our City. It is time for a change and WE the citizens can make it happen. I encourage you to channel all of your efforts in a Recall Petition Drive and end the reign of the Mayor and his cronies before they do more harm to the good citizens of Fate, our City name among other County Cities, and our financial standing.

  15. anonymous II says:

    Fate City Council Meeting tonight at 7pm.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Wanna make a difference? Since the election is over the citizens of Fate need to come together and demand the resignation of Skippy and anyone else who has “moral” issues that do not represent the people of Fate. Don’t even let them swear that bastard in and protest at the city council meetin Monday. I betcha the “unbiased, fact correct “newspaper well be there !

  17. CHRIS CAUBLE says:

    I have lived in fate for most of my life my family were some of the first settlers of fate, and i am very upset at the way these people who are on the city councile, and the mayor.and the city manager are obviously trying to cover up what really happend.Let me first say to linda, nick and clint tolbert that we love yall very much!! i grew up admireing rick tolbert for the way that he was and always will be to me a hero!!!THIS MAN WAS A PATRIOT HE SERVED HIS COUNTRY, HE SERVED HIS COMMUNITY,and loved his family and his fellow man! Rick was always there when the people of fate needed help and served us for years and probably for next to nothing for pay. But pay wasnt why rick did it,he did because thats what needed to be done. I grew up across from the fire house and when the alarm wouild sound Rick if he was not at the station in plano he was one of the first to arrive!! I was very proud to of had men like rick to have as a role model in my life!!!!!! And it saddens and angers me very very much to find out how the city of fates Mayor and councileman like skipworth saying things about a man who served honorably to his country, the city of plano and the city of fate for so many years.It makes my blood boil to find out how the city manager lied in that news paper article,that she didnt know about the citations given to rick or the warrants for his arrest, what a liar and idiot! the whole mess of them are liars,and cowards! What is happening in my opinion is a hijacking of peoples rights,and it starts at the top with the mayor and his minions, looks like there trying to strong arm the people of old fate by using code inforcement officers to fine people and harass people so they will sell there property.and leave, sounds like to me that weve got some real crooks that work and serve on the councile. Just look at the actions of one councilmen SKIPWORTH talking bad about a man in a public place right after the funeral what kind of skum does that i guess the same scum who sits on the council these people are the worst kind.I got news for them the good people of fate are not going to take this crap anymore its time to fight these people and expose them for what they realy are COWARDS AND SCUM!!!! PLEASE CONTACT ME IF YOU DISAGREE WITH MY COMMENTS ILL BE GLAD TO TELL YOU TO YOUR FACE!! And to skipwoth you are lucky i didnt here you say those comments,but i take my hat off to TOM he is a true friend to the tolberts and a TRUE MAN!!! thanx for doing what was needed to be done at that time tom god bless you! I live next door to the city manager thats how i know she wasnt out of town!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! she was right here the whole time its a disgrace the

  18. marilyn says:

    Tom should be elected mayor of Fate. There are so few honest and honorable people left in this world that will act instead of talk. Tom acted like a man should and I respect him for what he did. I would hope in that situation, I would have acted as honorable as he did. The other man should be ashamed of himself.

  19. Linda Tolbert says:

    Tom Shirey came from New Mexico as soon as he heard what had happened to Rick. He came to see if he could help my family because his heart is just as broken as ours are. He has been a close family friend for over twenty years.

    He and Rick had scraped the holes out of the streets in Fate many years ago, That is really when they came to know and respect each other. Rick wanted to rent the tractor to level our back yard and driveways. He found out it was cheaper to rent it for a week, and got the bright idea that he could learn how to drive the thing and fix the mostly dirt streets before he got near our house. Tom was driving through town, saw the big machine, stopped to talk to Rick because he had run big equipment before and the next thing you know they are playing in the street. When they got through, they were friends and the city only paid for half the cost of the rental and all of the streets were in good shape for several years thereafter.

    Tom has done a lot of things for the fire department here. He has lived here off and on for several years. When he is in town, he has BBQ’s and picnics for all kinds of people down by his pond. He keeps little bream in it so that kids can catch them for fun. He doesn’t have a mean bone in his body.

    The morning that this incident occurred, Tom had gone to pick up donuts for us before coming to the house to see if there was anything that he could do to help us. Tom was the only one of my husband’s friends that could manage to say the closing prayer at the funeral the day before. All of our feelings were raw and the last thing any of us wanted was to have a problem with anyone. I wasn’t there when this happened, but I saw Tom just minutes later. He was so upset. He could not really tell us what had happened – he did not want to tell us what Steve had said because it was so insulting to my husband and our family.

    I now believe that Steve went out of his way to bait Tom. I don’t know to what purpose. We were his great grandmother’s neighbors until her death several years ago – my husband used to help her with little things that an 80-90 year old woman couldn’t do for herself. Steve now lives where her old house used to be.

    I don’t understand any of this, especially his slanderous remarks about Rick to our friends. I personally think Steve owes Tom an apoligy. However, our family doesn’t want an apoligy, it will never heal the wound of the insults that he sent to us at the worst possible time in our lives.

  20. anonymous says:

    Wow! Whoever sent this must be a saint! People in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones….

  21. Anonymous says:

    Let’s take Fate Council Role call:
    Mayor: Bully, Can’t say he’s done much except raise what all of the people pay in Fate – A leader who will bring us into the future (If this is the future, I want out)
    1 respectless verbal abuser who is the true coward
    1 physical abuser
    1 allegedly engaged in criminal activity
    1 alcoholic
    1 philanderer
    1 what was his name again?

    With all of this great leadership, should we expect anything less? I have never heard one great story about something this council has done for us except raise our living expenses or maybe shut off someone’s water because they don’t need to have the garbage/recycling service that “Everyone wanted but on any given day only 1 out of 5 houses have recycling bins”.

    On the other hand, from day 1 of living here I always heard the great stories of Mr. Tolbert and all of the wonderful things he had done for the city. And this was from people who didn’t even live in the city.

    It is for shame the city has come to this, I open up this home page and see three stories about Fate. Unless the citizens come together and tell the council that their way isn’t working it’s just going to get worse. They will probably hire another staff member that’s going to steal more of the citizen’s money, what’s the current count 2 or 3?

  22. Donna Askew says:

    Read all of this message please … I do believe that Fate needs some clean up done and I also feel that some properties are an “eye-sore” with debris, old vehicles, broken furniture, weeds and trash. ALTHOUGH, being threatening, rude, and/or harmful to an individual’s investment is not a positive means to a real solution. We are a community of just over 5,000 people (very, very small) and that should provide a culture of helpfulness among our local government and citizens. Some of the folks may want to do what is asked of them but not know where to go or how to get the help they need to make it happen. Such as, some old vehicles (even if they do not run) can be donated to a charity or a high school mechanics shop in which case they will come and remove it for free. Depending on financial status (filing); some car, boat, RV donations can be used as a “write-off” as well. The GoodWill will pick up old furniture and allow the people they have in their training programs fix it then sell it to fund the programs future. Helping Hands is local and may be a good resource too. We have city trucks that may need a day or two of increased liability coverage on insurance but could be used to haul any unwanted items away for people who don’t have a means to do it themselves or might not be physically or financially able to remove what is being asked of them. Or, if that doesn’t work then maybe there might be some city members that would be willing to utilize their personal trucks to assist others. I don’t know the “answer” but maybe give a friendly avenue to our citizens that want to be compliant but can’t handle such a large undertaking. Our local government does not need to pretend they run a city the size of Dallas. They should have never let this get so out of hand. Could our mayor or any of the council members have gone to the doors of the people that needed to remove said items and explained that the city was attempting to “spruce up” the area a little and wanted to offer some assistance before the ordinance had to be enforced. Some of our community is elderly, have lived in their homes for many, many years (true fateonians) and don’t necessarily like progress but know that it is inevitable regardless where one lives … so if approached with kindness and an offer to help; may have made all the difference in the world. Maybe another type of community “Clean-up Day” where we can get large groups together to help the neighbors that want it. Share your thoughts because we need to get past this in honor of Mr. Tolbert and his personal hard work & efforts to make this a bonded community.

  23. wyliejoegibson says:

    I have known Tom Shirey since 1986. He is a man that goes to church every Sunday whether he is fishing at Lake Fork or selling BBQ at Red River. This is a man that sponsors children and parents who have little or no means to care for themselves. I know children that he has paid for them to go on trips, and church summer camp. He has stood in as a father figure for two kids that I know whose father died when they were very small.
    Tom Shirey is a hard-working, honest man. He gives kids jobs, and shows them how to become responsible, accountable adults. He always has time to listen to what you have to say. Tom has never been in any kind of trouble because he leads by example.
    I have seen Tom at Christmas and Thanksgiving with the back of his old suburban loaded down with boxed up holiday meals for people that he thought needed a good meal. He cooked it all himself – he delivered it all himself. The only reason I know this is not because he told me – I caught him at it several years ago.
    Tom has supported every volunteer fire department in this county. He, Rick Tolbert, Billy Crawford, Dwight Young and several others would get into bidding wars at auctions, just to help raise funds for these organizations.
    Tom is a loyal friend and an honorable man. If he tells you he will do something – you can take it to the bank. My understanding of what happened is that Tom was buying donuts to take to the Tolbert Family the day after the funeral. I heard Tom was having a private conversation with Rick’s sister-in-law, when Mr. Skipworth intruded. He distressed the sister-in-law to the point that she left, and I guess he continued on with Tom. I imagine when Mr. Skipworth made a dishonarable remark about another honorable man who was Tom’s friend, Tom just lost it.
    Mr. Skipworth, maybe public office is not for you. A public servant should listen first, speak last and try not to pick a fight on a public street with your constiuents.

  24. Gene Glasscock says:

    Tom Shirey, I salute you for defending the honor of your friend. I suppose the days of doing the right thing are now long gone and you will be punished by our legal system. I wish for the old days when justice really meant justice. Honor and courage are two words that are not in Mr. Skippy’s vocabulary.

  25. eyes of fate says:

    i suspect they sleep just fine. there is a nearly 80 yr. old man whose water they shut off because he believed it was wrong for the city to charge for trash pick-up with his water bill. he had other accomodations for trash and didn’t need the MARKED UP city price for garbage service. then when his neighbor let him run a water hose off his property the city threatened to shut the neighbor’s water off.

    its funny but most of the time when you get a large group together to buy one product the price goes down. but the illustrious fate city council/city manager not only made the deal to make all residents pay for garbage service but the price went up considerably from when each person could make their own contract with the garbage service. so let’s see. the price went up and the city is taking a 10% profit off of us from the marked up price. gee…that sounds like a tax to me.

    not to mention………….i hear there is a FEDERAL investigation into theft of city funds. and i know they recently had to let someone else go because the person had stolen from the previous city that he worked at.

    and they send arrest warrants for code violations. but it’s like “play” arrest warrants. they say they don’t turn them into the sheriff’s office. but when you ask city officials about that they say ……..’we don’t want anybody to go to jail”. skippy’s words to tom were…….”rick knew we weren’t going to arrest him”. huh?

    some of us had a court day for code violations and traffic citations. the judge in there was talking to us, the OFFENDERS of fate, about other offenders of fate and he had a STACK of papers he was signing that he TOLD US were more arrest warrants. he further told us that they were people who prob. didn’t pay their taxes as well. have you ever heard of a JUDGE talking to the “criminals” during a court proceeding? talking to us like we were “in on the joke” with him? you know the joke about the pretend arrest warrants.

    fate has a new moniker. it’s the new LAVON. remember the 60 MINUTES show years ago that showed how the city of lavon was a traffic trap. they wrote more tickets per capita that almost anyone in the nation. i know people who refuse to even come through fate anymore because the policemen here are crawling all over the place at all hours. hey FATE CITY COUNCIL…..if you want more businesses to come here why not get rid of the gestapo you have hired from the sheriff’s dept. average normal people do not like wading thru cops just to get somewhere else. and the cops you have have a bad attitude toward the citizens here. EVERYBODY who runs into the cops on their multiple “coffee breaks” up at the store finds them cold and callous. i do not appreciate being treated like a criminal because of whatever it is that they don’t like about me. if they are here to protect me then i expect them to have a little more warmness in their heart especially if i am going to have to see them on every block. AND ESPECIALLY IF I AM PAYING THEIR SALARY. now if i break the law it would all be different. esp. if i shot someone. or if i was selling drugs at a school. or if i hit somebody with my car and then ran away. but honestly just living here ought not to provoke their scorn and contempt for me.

  26. Nick Tolbert says:

    Thank you for your comments.

  27. Disgusted says:

    Wonder how Skipworth, rest of the city council and the city prosecutor sleep at night with the blood of a good man on their hands? EVIL, EVIL, EVIL communist people!!!! Just what our president wants for all of American. I hope the Tolbert family and the rest of the families that have been tormented by the power hungry evil city government of Fate sue for the millions they deserve.

  28. Ryan P says:

    I have lived here in the neighborhood since 2006. I had the pleasure of meeting your father right after we moved in. He had come over to our street to assist with a water main break. I have never met you personally, however a mutual friend who has been a long time resident of this neighborhood (don’t want to put his name on this public site) told me about all the work your father had done for this city. Some of it didn’t sound like work that anyone else would have wanted to do. He told me that the your father was very inventive in fixing some of these items because the city often didn’t have the money to fix them. As far as I am concerned, your father should be honored by the city for his service. A man who has served his country, served as a public servant and has done so much for the city that he lived in, sounds like an honorable, respectable man to me.
    I’m very sorry for your loss. You family will be in our prayers.

  29. Nick Tolbert says:

    I am the oldest son of Richard “Rick” Tolbert. I would like comment about the recent events surrounding my father’s death. My father was always a hard worker and did a great deal for this city. And the members of the local government have never and will never appreciate the sacrifices that men like my father have made so that they obtain their positions of “power”. The power of elected officials is to help the people, not subjugate them to ridiculous standards of living. Mr. Skipworth was completely out of line with his comments. I am sorry about what transpired, but for a man like Mr. Skipworth a person I have known for approximately 20 years to speak so ill of a man who actually did something instead talking about it, or getting city officials to do his dirty work for him is absolutely laughable. For I feel that a man who will speak ill of a man the day after hes layed to rest, a man whose funeral he attended shows the quality of politicians that our once calm, quiet and sociable community has been assaulted by. Should anyone have any particular problem with me, my family, or my right as a private citizen, please feel free to discuss this with me peacefully, I will listen to your grievances and try to be accomidating. Because I am a man like my father who was respectable and contrary to city belief was not a coward. I am proud to bear the last name of Tolbert.

  30. eyes of fate says:

    hey, gary turner…………i want to meet you buddy.

  31. eyes of fate says:

    i have known tom shirey for over 20 years. skipworth too. what i know about tom is this………i have seen him riding around with turkeys and hams around Christmas giving them away to people he knew that might not have the money for food. i have seen him fly orphans to los angeles so he could take them to see the hannah montanna show. i have seen him take those same kids on a cruise and also took them to las vegas because he wanted to see them smile.

    tom has been in business all these years and has had to deal with many different types of people. he has always dealt fairly with people and i have never known of even ONE violent episode. i am certain that tom was provoked beyond endurance. he loved rick tolbert and rick’s family.

    what i know about skipworth……..lol.

  32. D from Rockwall says:

    Oh btw, I believe you guys have my e-mail visible. If you want to get ahold of Tom for his side of the story straight from him send me an E-mail, and I will have him give you a call.

  33. D from Rockwall says:

    Yep the story has it right. Tom, who has known Steve and Rick for nearly 40 years. I’m a friend of Tom’s and he stopped by and spoke with us today about this. Here is his side of the story. Basically Tom blames the city of Fate and its city council for driving rick to commit suicide. Rick, who had worked for the city of fate doing everything from water lines to code enforcement himself for Fate before it decided it was going to be a “big” city, was basically abandoned by the city of Fate and Fate was trying to run him off. Already fighting depression, Rick went on to kill himself.

    While up at the court house Tom ran into his old “friend” Steve, who was kind enough to inform him old “friend” Tom that Rick was nothing but a coward and a loser for committing suicide. Obviously since Tom, as well as Rick’s family, place some of the blame on the city for this action, Tom didn’t take too kindly to the words of one of the men who had helped push Rick to do this. So Tom grabbed him by the neck pushed him up against the building and punched him in the face a few times.

    Now here is the kicker. Steve, tells Tom he is going to go call the cops, and soon later there are 6 cop cars, 2 fire trucks, an ambulance and the entire area is roped off as if its a murder scene. Steve who just got punched a couple times and was cognative enough to walk into the court house and call the cops, suddenly needs to be carted off in an ambulance and get an MRI and all sorts of rediculous crap you would expect from a person trying to sue you for accidently backing into their car at 2 miles an hour.

    Long story short. It’s probably not a good idea to tell a man that one of his best friends was a coward a day after that friend is laid down to rest. Especially when you had a hand in pushing him to do it to begin with. Given a similar scenario I would have done the same thing, only he may really have needed an MRI afterwards.

    P.S. Tom was the owner and operator of Shirey’s BBQ in Fate in Rockwall. The best BBQ this area has ever had.

  34. gary turner says:

    Funny thing, I am physically assaulted by Forest Murley (Fate City Councilman) in April 2009 (Fate clean up day), he is issued a citation which is then dismissed +- 30 days later by the City of Fate Prosecutor and I am never even notified of the dismissal. I had to file a public information request to obtain the information that the citation was dismissed and also the city and or the Sheriffs office would not provide me a copy of my written statement the deputy took on the day the assault took place. Mr. Shirey goes to jail and must post a bond. Is this fair and just? Is there one set of laws for the council members and one set of laws for the citizens?

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