AUSTIN (KXAN) – An Austin Police officer indicted in connection to the 2020 racial injustice protests resigned from a state commission on Wednesday.

Justin Berry confirmed to KXAN on Thursday the Senate confirmed his resignation on the floor Wednesday. 

In August 2022, Governor Greg Abbott appointed Berry to the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE) for a term set to expire August 30, 2027.

Earlier in 2022, Berry was indicted, along with 18 other APD officers, on aggravated assault charges related to the May 2020 racial injustice protests in downtown Austin. He previously called the indictment “frivolous.” Berry bonded out on a $1 bond amount.

Abbott provided a statement in August in response to questions about the indictment, which said “Here in Texas, we back the blue. Justin Berry is a proven public servant who has selflessly worked to protect his community and his fellow Texans.” Abbott added that officers who responded during protests in Austin “deserve to be praised, not prosecuted.”

The governor has the authority to make governmental appointments, a power given to the Governor of Texas by the state’s Constitution.

Most appointments are:

  • State officials and members of state boards, commissions and councils that carry out the laws and direct the policies of state government activities;
  • Members of task forces that advise the Governor or executive agencies on specific issues and policies; or
  • State elected and judicial offices when vacancies occur by resignation or death of the office holder.

Texas residents can also apply for appointment to a position on a Board or Commission.

TCOLE is comprised of nine members appointed by the governor. The Commissioners serve staggered terms of six years and serve without compensation except for reasonable and necessary expenses. Three are members of the general public, three are law enforcement chief executive officers, and three are line personnel from law enforcement agencies at the time of their appointment.