Arrest at Royse City father-daughter dance outrages parents

Some Royse City parents are outraged after their daughters had to watch police arrest a father at a daddy-daughter dance.

The parents aren't necessarily upset that the man was taken into custody, and they understand that police have a job to do. But they say it was the wrong place to do it, in front of a group of about 200 elementary school-aged girls.

Police were looking for Jonathan Edward Sampson for a felony warrant connected to an incident that happened in September 2014.

Police told FOX 4 over the phone that they didn't have Sampson's home address, so when an off-duty officer noticed Sampson at the dance over the weekend, the department was notified and Sampson was arrested.

"We saw his daughter just crying for them not to take him," said Tommy Garcia, a father at the dance. "You know, people [were] consoling her.

Another father at the event, Jason Burton, says his 7-year-old was traumatized by the arrest.  

"…Grabbing onto my arm, started crying and said, ‘What's going on, Daddy?'" said Burton. "…To bring eight officers to a violent felony arrest, they felt that they needed to bring extra assistance for their own regard, but they didn't take any regard for the children."

Police said Samson was arrested Saturday because his case was under investigation, and the warrant had just been issued. They also said they intentionally made the arrest at the end of the dance, and that they made every effort to make things go as smoothly as possible.

"Being a small town, I knew probably a dozen of the fathers that were there last night and they're all very upset and angry," said Burton.

Sandy Van Dyke, one of the dance organizers, says she understands, but wishes they had been notified.

"The officers were doing their jobs," she said. "It's not up to us to question. They're there to keep us safe."

Sampson has a long criminal history, including arrests for aggravated assault and resisting arrest.

"It really could've escalated, and something like that, what if he did, you know, have a gun?" said Garcia. "…You're putting lives in danger of every little girl and their father in that dance."


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