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State Attorney General
Ken Paxton has been ordered to appear before the Texas Senate to answer to 16 of 20 articles of impeachment that were overwhelmingly approved by the Texas House in May. That vote left Paxton suspended from office without pay.
The trial before the Texas Senate
The trial is set to begin Sept. 5 in the Senate chamber, with Lt. Gov.
Dan Patrick serving as presiding officer, or judge. Twelve House impeachment managers, working with prominent Texas attorneys, form the prosecution. Paxton’s defense team also includes well-known Texas lawyers. All senators are required to attend to serve as jurors, although under Senate rules. Paxton’s wife, Sen. Angela Paxton, is not allowed to participate in deliberations or vote on “any matter, motion or question.” Potential impeachment trial witnesses
Each side was required to file a witness list before Aug. 22, but the lists were not made public. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick
has ordered some witnesses to appear on the first day of the trial. Those who may be called to testify under oath include: Read more about who’s who in the trial
Three-term Republican lieutenant governor. As president of the Senate, Patrick will serve as judge in the impeachment trial. Patrick can rule on pretrial motions or ask senators to vote on pretrial matters, but any motion to dismiss an article of impeachment must be approved by a majority of senators.
The three-term Republican attorney general was impeached in May on accusations of misconduct that include bribery, dereliction of duty and obstruction of justice. Most articles of impeachment focus on allegations, made by former top lieutenants, that Paxton used the attorney general’s office to benefit Paul, a friend and political donor.
Attorney general, suspended
A Republican-majority team of 12 House representatives overseeing the prosecution. Led by Republican Rep.
Andrew Murr, a West Texas rancher and lawyer, and Democratic Rep. Ann Johnson, a former prosecutor, the team includes 11 people with law degrees. Other Republican managers are Reps. Briscoe Cain, Charlie Geren, Cody Thane Vasut, David Spiller, Jeff Leach and Morgan Meyer. The Democratic managers are Reps. Erin Elizabeth Gámez, Joe Moody, Oscar Longoria and Terry Canales.
House impeachment managers
One of two lead prosecutors for the House’s impeachment team, DeGuerin is a Houston attorney who has defended former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, media mogul Robert Durst during his 2003 murder trial and acquittal, and Branch Davidian leader David Koresh during the 1993 Waco standoff.
One of two lead prosecutors for the House’s impeachment team, Hardin is a Houston attorney who has defended Arthur Andersen, the accounting firm at the heart of the Enron scandal, NFL quarterback DeShaun Watson amid a litany of sexual assault lawsuits in Harris County, and baseball player Wade Boggs.
Hired in July to represent the House impeachment team, O’Neill served 12 years as a Republican justice on the Texas Supreme Court, stepping down in 2010 to work as a lawyer in private practice. She also has served as a state district judge and a justice on the 14th Court of Appeals.
A Houston criminal defense attorney in private practice, Epley is the chief counsel for the House General Investigating Committee and was the lead investigator for the committee's team that investigated Paxton prior to impeachment. She is a member of the prosecution's legal team. Prior to entering private practice, she was an assistant U.S. attorney.
Houston attorney leading Paxton’s defense team. Known for his bombast in and out of the courtroom, Buzbee successfully defended former Gov. Rick Perry in 2015 against abuse of office charges in Travis County. He also represented 20 women who accused NFL quarterback DeShaun Watson of sexual assault and harassment.
Houston attorney defending Paxton. Cogdell is well-known in legal circles for representing Clive Doyle, a Branch Davidian leader who was acquitted of murder conspiracy, and Sheila Kahanek, the only defendant in the Enron trial to be acquitted.
As legal counsel for Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who is serving as judge, Myers will assist on matters “related to all rulings, orders, mandates, writs, questions of evidence, and processes authorized by the rules of the court of impeachment”. A Republican justice on the Dallas-based 5th Court of Appeals from 2009-2022, she previously served as a Dallas County district court judge and assistant district attorney.
Former state appellate judge
Two-term Republican senator from McKinney who is married to Ken Paxton and won election to the district he previously represented. Angela Paxton will sit on the court of impeachment but will not be allowed to vote on motions or attend private deliberations due to a conflict of interest.
Not a juror
Austin real estate investor central to Paxton’s corruption allegations. Multiple top deputies for Paxton said he abused his office to help Paul in legal battles, including hiring an outside lawyer to investigate Paul’s claims that search warrants for a 2019 raid on his home and businesses had been altered.
Real estate investor
Former director of law enforcement at the attorney general’s office whose career in law enforcement spanned nearly 50 years. In November 2020, he joined three other employees in a whistleblower lawsuit claiming Paxton had fired them in retaliation for reporting to the FBI that Paxton was misusing his authority to help Paul.
Former director of law enforcement
Former deputy attorney general for policy and strategy initiatives. Brickman was recruited to Paxton’s office after working in Kentucky GOP politics. In November 2020, he joined three other employees in a whistleblower lawsuit claiming Paxton fired them in retaliation for reporting to the FBI that Paxton was misusing his office to help Paul.
Former deputy attorney general
Former deputy attorney general for criminal justice. Penley is a former prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in North Texas. In late 2020, he joined three other employees in a whistleblower lawsuit claiming Paxton fired them in retaliation for reporting to the FBI that Paxton was misusing his office to help Paul.
Former deputy attorney general
Former deputy attorney general for legal counsel who alleged Paxton pressured him to release information that would help Paul gain information about an FBI investigation into his business. He joined a whistleblower lawsuit claiming Paxton fired employees in retaliation for reporting to the FBI that Paxton was misusing his office to help Paul.
Former deputy attorney general
Wicker drove Paxton around, managed his schedule and helped with his daily routines. Information Wicker provided to House investigators helped form the basis for several articles of impeachment related to Paxton’s dealings with Paul.
Paxton’s former personal assistant
Former Travis County district attorney. Paxton claimed his office started investigating the FBI raid of Paul’s home and businesses because Moore’s office asked the attorney general to get involved. Paxton then hired an outside lawyer to investigate. Moore has said her office did not ask Paxton to investigate and only referred the case at Paxton’s request.
Former Travis County district attorney
Houston defense lawyer hired by Paxton to investigate Paul’s claims that search warrants authorizing the raid of his home and businesses had been altered. Employees at the attorney general’s office opposed Cammack’s hiring, saying Paul’s claim had been investigated and found to lack merit. Cammack issued 39 subpoenas for those involved in the searches and for Paul’s opponents in lawsuits.
Austin-based nonprofit that made investments with Paul’s real estate businesses. When Paul refused to provide information on the financial status of those investments, Mitte sued him for fraud. Former top attorney general’s office officials allege that Paxton ordered the agency to get involved in the lawsuit to aid Paul.
Paxton’s former top deputy. Mateer resigned in October 2020, days after he and other top officials met with FBI agents to express concerns about Paxton’s relationship with Paul.
Former first assistant attorney general
Former lawyer for Paul. Wynne provided direction and information to Brandon Cammack, an outside lawyer who was hired by Paxton in 2020 to investigate complaints made by Paul.
Former first assistant district attorney for Travis County, Montford, now employed by the state attorney general’s office, met Paxton and Paul for lunch in May 2020 to discuss Paul’s allegation of law enforcement misconduct during a search of his home and businesses. Montford told House investigators that she didn’t believe Paul’s story.
Former first assistant to Travis County district attorney
Disclosure: Dick DeGuerin, Rusty Hardin, Tony Buzbee, Margaret Moore and the State Bar of Texas have been financial supporters of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors. Financial supporters play no role in the Tribune's journalism. Find a complete list of them here.
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