GREGG COUNTY, Texas (KETK) – The Gregg County Criminal District Attorney, Tom Watson, announced on Friday that he will not run for a second term.
“After much thought and prayer,” Watson said. “I have decided I will not seek re-election as District Attorney.”
Watson said he was making the announcement to give potential candidates time to organize their campaigns.
Watson gave the following statement:
“When I ran for DA in 2018 with the backing of law enforcement, I made a promise to fill the need for decisive leadership and aggressive prosecution. I am proud to say that I kept that promise. In my first year, we increased criminal prosecutions in Gregg County, exceeding the numbers of the previous administration. Then came the pandemic. COVID-19 protocols halted jury trials. The intervening months have been challenging, pressure-filled and compromising. The resulting stress has not been good for my health or my family’s health. And nothing in my life comes before my family – except God. So, yes, I will finish my term as promised, but I will not run again. Guess I’m a cop at heart, not a politician. In closing, I wish to thank my supporters and all law enforcement, my brothers and sisters in blue. I’m grateful for their support these past three years and during the balance of my term in office. After that, I plan to return to private practice.”
Watson shared his decision privately with DA prosecutors and staff. He also made personal calls to the Sheriff and the Chiefs of Gregg County law enforcement agencies informing them of his decision. Watson’s term ends Dec. 31, 2022.