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Ken Paxton Wanted To Be Tried In Collin County, Court Said No

Texas Court of Criminal Appeals determined Paxton’s trial will be conducted in Houston
Photo: Ken Paxton | Website

A delay on the 8-year-old securities fraud against Attorney General Ken Paxton came to an end on Wednesday, June 14, 2023, when Texas’s highest criminal court ruled the impeachment trial will be conducted in Houston in late August. 

According to the Texas Tribune, the matter of where the trial would be held began as soon as Paxton was indicted by a Collin County grand jury in 2015. In 2017 prosecutors were able to remove the case from Collin County arguing that, given Paxton’s background as a House and Senate Representative for the county where he lives for over a decade before his role as AG, they would not get a fair trial. 

However, the case went back once again to Collin County in 2020 after Paxton’s defense contended that the judge who ordered the case to Harris County had no jurisdiction over the case. Prosecutors' appeals finally led to last Wednesday’s ruling, which stated that the judge’s authority was granted by the Texas Constitution. 

As reported by the Tribune, Paxton’s defense push for Collin County could have implications for the jury pool. Following the Texas House vote to impeach Paxton, Republicans from Collin County rallied in support of the now-suspended AG. 

While they said in a joint statement that the decision was particularly difficult due to the personal relationship they held with Paxton, all five Collin County representatives voted in favor of his impeachment. The joint statement also claimed that after a thorough analysis of the law, it became clear there was sufficient evidence to impeach Paxton. 

In response, on Monday, June 12, 2023, the Collin County GOP released a unanimously passed resolution condemning Paxton’s impeachment alluding to a lack of proper due process. The resolution also called for the impeachment articles to return to the House of Representatives until due process is completed and for Paxton to resume his duties as elected AG.

Paxton is facing charges that include a decade of alleged bribery and misuse of office. Although the impeachment trial before the Senate hasn’t been scheduled, a resolution approved by senators said it should begin before August 28, 2023.