HometownBell County


Killeen business offers second chance, employment to felons

Posted at 8:21 PM, Nov 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-01 21:30:06-04

Cory Simek is the owner of the Key Kennect auto dealership in Killeen but, he is also a three-time felon whose drug habits landed him in handcuffs again and again.

"What they don’t tell you in songs and in the movies as they’re glorifying it, is that there are real consequences that come with that. Those consequences were prison for me," said Simek.

After spending about eight collective years of his life in prison, Simek now owns his own car dealership and employs felons like him.

The goal, to give them the chance to change their lives like he did.

"I have a few friends that were living that negative lifestyle and I could tell that they wanted to genuinely make a change and do something better. I was able to give them that opportunity and its really, really paid off for them," said Simek.

The opportunity to change your life for the better is exactly what Cedric Luster said is only possible for him because Simek was willing to give him a chance after he became a three-time felon himself.

"I could never look that gift horse in the mouth because my life is completely changed because of that opportunity that he’s given me,” said Luster.

Luster said that the support Simek gave him, extends well beyond offering jobs to felons who are trying to change.

"He stepped up and help me. He steps up and helps a lot of people. It's just giving out that helping hand and making sure people know that they’re want and cared for in the community,” said Luster.

Simek said his change in life started when he realized that the cops weren’t his enemy and the reason he went to prison was simple, he broke the law.

That is why he now does what he can to support law enforcement.

"In order to extend that olive branch and want to bridge that gap from where I used to be and where I'm at now, I've been trying to do certain things like donating to KPD officers for Christmas and things of that nature," said Simek.

The change Simek made in his life is inspiring others to do the same and they are grateful.

"I’m able to come to work each day and be the person that I am on the inside and it goes over well with the public. So, thank you,” said Luster.

Simek is now dedicating his life to helping his community and proving that if you put in the work, you can change your life.