Allen Mayor Pro Tem Gary Caplinger resigns amid child pornography allegations

Gary Leon Caplinger was arrested last week on two counts of possession of child pornography.

Former Allen Mayor Pro Tem Gary Caplinger submitted a letter of resignation from his post as Place 5 Councilman of the Allen City Council, the city confirmed in a press release on Wednesday. The council is anticipated to accept and finalize the resignation at its Feb. 23 meeting.

This move comes less than one week after Caplinger’s Feb. 11 arrest, which happened approximately one week after he was indicted by a grand jury on two counts of possession of child pornography, with one charge including intent to promote.

Caplinger’s attorney, Todd Shaprio, and the Collin County Sheriff’s Office confirmed last week that he turned himself in. Jail records indicate that Caplinger posted bond and was released on the day of his arrest.

When asked about the prospect of Caplinger’s resignation, Shapiro told Star Local Media last week, “If he decides to step down and makes that decision [thinking] it’s best for him and his family, then that’s up to him, but it’s not going to be due to any other reasons.”

News of the allegations sparked community-wide condemnation and calls for Caplinger’s resignation. Before his resignation, Councilwoman Lauren Doherty indicated that she planned to make a motion to formally strip him of his title as mayor pro tem, a position he has held since 2012 and was reinstated by council through a unanimous vote on Dec. 8.

“My thoughts are with the victims of these horrible acts, with Mr. Caplinger’s wife and children, and with the citizens of Allen who placed their trust in him,” Doherty said in a statement.

Before his resignation, Caplinger’s term was slated to expire in May. He was ineligible to run for reelection due to term limits. Pointing out his status as a lame duck, Shapiro said last week, “You’re talking about 2022 and beyond for this case to be resolved … his term on the City Council will come and go well before resolution of this matter.”

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