Wichita Co. JOP precinct 4 race could be redone in May

Published: Mar. 15, 2022 at 10:51 PM CDT
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WICHITA FALLS, Texas (KAUZ) - Wichita County Justice of the Peace Precinct 4 Judge Judy Baker has submitted a special election contest petition for the Republican primary JOP race to the Wichita County clerk’s office.

That court document was filed on March 11, and it may soon give voters in precinct 4 a chance to revote on the JOP race that was missing from their ballots during the primary election last month.

However, Baker said she is not doing it for personal gain, but rather to give voters a voice.

Candidate Captain Randy Elliot also talked about what he plans to do, as well as County Clerk Lori Bohannon, who said this is the first of its kind for Wichita County.

“My opponent and I both said during the election a contest will probably be done because of names not being on the ballot, people are not having their say,” Baker said.

“They will get to have another election if the district judge grants it. There’s no guarantee, either way, it depends on what the judge orders me to do. Also, it can’t be a district judge from Wichita County it has to be someone outside the county because it’s too close,” Bohannon said.

As of Monday Baker said, her lawyers informed her that a district judge in Montague County has already been chosen to decide whether or not there will be another JOP precinct 4 race during the May elections.

“It has to be quick. You have to file it so many days after the calculus and then you file it. Mr. Elliot will have five days to answer and five days after that, if they don’t do a continuous, we should know how this will go,” Baker said.

Elliot said he’s already obtained legal representation and is preparing his next steps as well.

“We won it. She didn’t like it I guess, I don’t know, but we’re filing a response to her suit she’s made for a new election,” Elliot said.

Wichita County officials said with it being a new process, only time will tell what exactly will happen next.

“When most people go to court, they sit there in front of the judge. I don’t know if that will happen or it’ll be that he just reads over the affidavits and the documents,” Bohannon said. " I wish that it had been caught the first day instead of three or four days in but it did. Of course, this was never our intent to happen and we don’t operate that way here.”

Bohannon said if there is no decision for reelection by the Wichita County May election, there may be a special election in the summer specifically for the justice of the peace precinct four race.

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