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Sheriff's Lt. resigns amid investigation into controversial arrest

Lt. Huffor
El Paso County Sheriff's Office
Posted at 5:01 PM, Nov 19, 2020
and last updated 2021-01-22 10:45:51-05

EL PASO COUNTY — A high-ranking El Paso County Sheriff's Office lieutenant accused of misusing his power to make an arrest is off the force.

News 5 Investigates has confirmed that Lt. Bill Huffor has resigned from his position.

Lt. Huffor
Lt. Huffor with the El Paso County Sheriff's Office

Back in August, Huffor arrested a man for assaulting him, but video evidence obtained by News 5 Investigates showed no physical assault occurred.

The 4th Judicial District Attorney's Office ultimately dismissed charges against Tony Twiss and an administrative review was initiated into Huffor's actions by the El Paso County Sheriff's Office.

The controversial arrest:

As we reported earlier this year in this News 5 Investigates report, Twiss was arrested and booked into jail for shining a flashlight at Huffor.

Tony Twiss

Twiss claims he was getting ready to leave his house to run to Walmart when he noticed an SUV "blacked out" on the side of his daughter's bedroom window.

He says he went outside with a flashlight to investigate.

Inside the unmarked SUV was Lt. Huffor who was apparently finishing up some paperwork on a previous case.

"He (Huffor) tells me not to be shining lights on people because I could get hurt and then he tells me to give him my ID," Twiss explained. "I pulled it (my ID) out and said wait a minute, let me grab my camera right quick and I'll be right back."

Twiss says Huffor was agitated about being approached and didn't understand why the Lt. had requested his ID. At the time Huffor requested Twiss' identification, Twiss was not under any type of criminal investigation.

Twiss wanted the situation documented and went to get his wife to record what was happening.

According to Twiss, Huffor's attitude changed when his wife came out with her cell phone recording.

"He says you're free to go," Twiss said. "He says you don't have to give it to me anyway and then I thought to myself, 'okay'. I said can you move your car so I can go?"

Instead of de-escalating the situation and leaving since no crime had been committed, Huffor appears to egg Twiss on by refusing to leave and move his SUV away from Twiss' house.

As Twiss turns to walk back up his driveway, you can see for a split second that Tony's light flashes at Huffor.

Huffor then places Twiss in handcuffs.

Cell phone video captures Huffor telling Twiss he's under arrest for "obstruction".

Cell phone video

Obstruction is a misdemeanor charge. However, court records indicated charges were upgraded to felony assault on an officer.

"If I assaulted him I deserved it, but I didn't assault him," Twiss said. "I never touched him."

In an arrest report, Huffor said the light from the flashlight caused him instant pain, a headache and disoriented him.

However, video evidence raises questions over whether Huffor exaggerated the situation.

At no time on cell phone video do we see Huffor appear to be disoriented. He had no issues placing Twiss in handcuffs and at no time during the video recording did we hear Huffor call for medical attention.

Lt. Huffor's resignation:

El Paso County has declined to release Huffor's resignation letter.

However, we've confirmed he will be paid out $21,980.04 on Nov. 20.

The majority of this paycheck consists of unused vacation time Huffor is entitled to collect.

Since Huffor voluntarily resigned, a county spokesperson said Huffor is eligible for rehire.

According to a social media post from Sheriff Bill Elder, Huffor is no longer working in law enforcement and now runs a pet shop in Colorado Springs.

El Paso County Sheriff's Office
El Paso County Sheriff's Office in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

This investigation was initiated by a viewer news tip. If you have a problem or issue you'd like our investigative team to look into, call our tip line at 719-228-6275 or send an email to News5Investigates@KOAA.com.