DALLAS -- Dwaine Caraway has plead guilty to federal corruption and tax evasion charges and has resigned from the Dallas City Council.
Caraway, the former mayor pro tem, has admitted to accepting over $450,000 in bribes from Robert Leonard and Slater Smartwood Sr., former executives of the company at the center of a stop-arm camera scandal that ended with the demise of the school bus company, Dallas County Schools.
"Leonard also paid for Caraway to travel to New Orleans, Las Vegas, Austin. And these trips were fully funded. He also paid for security cameras in Caraways home. A loan for Caraway's fathers home, funeral expenses for family members, a campaign bus, casino chips and gambling funds for the horse track," said Erin Nealy Cox, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas. "In return, Caraway, in his official capacity took action benefiting force multiplier solutions; voting on ordinances needed to promote the stop arm program in 2012, pressuring the city attorney's office to provide a favorable opinion as to the propriety of fines associated with stop arm cameras, and promising to use his position on the council to further Leonard's real estate developments."
Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings posted a statement on Twitter saying, "I appreciate that he is admitting his crimes and sparing the city what could have been a drawn out legal battle...This city is so much bigger than any one politician who lost his way."
Caraway faces seven years in federal prison and is scheduled to be sentenced on December 14th.
Leonard has also pleaded guilty to a federal conspiracy charge.
"The citizens of Dallas deserve honest government. And there is absolutely no level of acceptable corruption," said Cox.