The 12 jurors deliberated less than three hours before 10 answered 'yes' to three of 17 questions pertaining to Kinney's competency as sheriff. Ten needed to answer only one question affirmatively to find he acted incompetently.
The 10 agreed Kinney promoted Gordon Bohannon to chief deputy with knowledge that Bohannon had "improper involvement" with a known felon and a person with criminal intentions. They also agreed Kinney allowed Bohannon to go to the district attorney to have a case dismissed involving a felon who was part of the drug ring, and Kinney failed to enforce sheriff's office written policy about "consorting" with people of bad character.
Bohannon, who testified at the trial for the county, has pleaded guilty to federal charges for his involvement the meth ring and is awaiting sentencing.
The jurors answered 'no' to seven questions regarding allegations of official misconduct.
In his closing argument, George Thompson, said action was needed because Kinney had ignored signs that one of his deputies was involved in a drug ring. County officials who suspended Kinney were trying to protect county residents, he said: "These good men saw something evil was flourishing and decided to do something."
Hobson said in his closing that Kinney should have been removed at re-election, not trial. He also claimed the investigation was a witch hunt.
"This whole process stinks — they way they've gone about removing David Kinney," he said. "If David Kinney is incompetent he should be removed. By you" at the polls.
What an extraordinary development! A similar removal petition has been filed in Dallas and green-lighted by a local judge, but prosecutors haven't announced whether they'll move forward. The Dallas News reported recently that:
While not a common occurrence, a number of elected officials in Texas have been removed from office or suspended after allegations of wrongdoing, misconduct or incompetence. Some recent examples: EDUARDO "WALO" BAZAN LARRY DALE FLOYD ERNEST GERARD MIRELES SAUL OCHOA
While not a common occurrence, a number of elected officials in Texas have been removed from office or suspended after allegations of wrongdoing, misconduct or incompetence. Some recent examples:
EDUARDO "WALO" BAZAN
LARRY DALE FLOYD
ERNEST GERARD MIRELES
One notices the majority of officials who've been removed from office this way have been law enforcement officers - constables, a prosecutor, and now a Sheriff.