First, Texas Court of Criminal Appeals Judge Larry Meyers has changed parties and announced he's running for the Texas Supreme Court as a Democrat. His term on the CCA isn't up until 2016 so he doesn't have to resign to run. Noted Burnt Orange Report, "Judge Meyers, who has spent 21 years as a statewide elected Texas Republican, did not give a reason for why he was switching." Fascinating. Who knows what's behind it?
Meanwhile, Polk County District Judge Elizabeth Coker, who resigned last Friday as part of an agreement with the State Commission on Judicial Conduct after she was caught texting advice to prosecutors during trials from the bench, has signed up to run for Polk County District Attorney. Reported the Houston Chronicle:
Coker will be challenging the incumbent prosecutor, Lee Hon, who was among the witnesses who testified about Coker this year before the State Commission on Judicial Conduct. ...
Local attorney Laura Prigmore is mulling over whether to ask the courts if a prosecutor can be considered a "judicial" position since it is listed under the judicial branch in the Texas Constitution.The scandal has all but engulfed the Polk County legal system:
The last time a state district judge voluntarily stepped aside to avoid possible disciplinary action was in 2009 when Central Texas Judge Emil Prohl was accused of spending forfeiture funds.
Hon, who was exonerated by investigations into his office's dealings with Coker, said he intends to "regain the public's trust after this unfortunate turn of events" and that he is the only candidate with experience as a prosecutor. ...You couldn't make this stuff up.
Cecil Berg, an attorney who filed complaints against Coker and who is running to replace her as district judge, described Coker's campaign as "the most brazen thing I've ever seen."
"I'm dismayed by it," he said. "After all the improper communiqués she's had with assistant district attorneys while a judge, now she wants to run the department. It's beyond my comprehension."
Kaycee Jones, a former assistant Polk County prosecutor, is facing a hearing before a state bar grievance committee in March for her admission that she improperly used text messages from Coker during a 2012 trial.
Jones, who was later elected a district judge herself, acknowledged the secret texts exchanged to bolster the prosecution's case was "wrong."