District Attorney Chris Dennis has been removed as the prosecutor in additional cases in the 286th District Court in Hockley County.
District Judge Pat Phelan has removed Dennis as prosecutor in cases involving two more defendants, both represented by Attorney Laurie Key of Lubbock. Dennis was removed from some additional cases represented by Attorney Christina Woods earlier this month. He is being removed due to prosecutorial vindictiveness. During the hearing Dennis indicated he had notified other attorneys including Key that Plea Bargain offers were considered null and void effective immediately. Attorney Laurie Key said she did not receive the notice. Both attorneys have said the motion came after disagreements with Dennis in previous court cases.
Dennis has filed a motion for a writ of mandamus in the seventh court of appeals in Amarillo. He has filed against all the defendants in Woods’ motion and against District Judge Pat Phelan. A writ of mandamus is an order from a higher court to a lower government official ordering the fulfillment of official duties or to correct an abuse of discretion.