Petition filed against Burkeen

Staff Report

Limestone County Commissioners John McCarver, W.A. “Sonny” Baker and Jerry Allen have filed a petition in 77th Judicial District Court on Sept. 29 to remove County Judge Daniel Burkeen from his office as Limestone County Judge.

Some of the allegations were:

• Arrested in Mart for driving while intoxicated on April 12.  

• Burkeen was engaged in Official Misconduct by engaging inappropriate conduct with a female high school-age girl and other females who appear in his Court on criminal cases.

• Was observed by jail personnel going into a holding cell at the Limestone County Jail and hugging a female inmate.

• Burkeen repeatedly and personally visits certain female inmates at the Limestone County jail in contact visits. He then, according to jail records, authorizes a PR bond for those females.

• Shows a lack of respect and honor to his judicial office requires and has lost public trust and confidence in the legal system as suggested in the Preamble to the Texas Code of Judicial Conduct.

“These allegations are half truths,” Burkeen said. “They (the commissioners who file the petition) do not include what I do all the time and chose to choose only the females and twisted it. I have counseled with and ministered to people at the jail, men and women. Before taking office, I was involved in a jail ministry with the men in the jail. I would minister to them, I would hold hands and pray with them, I would hug them. I am very proud that the Lord saw fit to use me in this way, and will not apologize for it just because some choose to take a few instances to create a completely false impression for their own political purposes. We have an election coming up and we should leave these matters to the voters, letting the voters decide based on the ‘truth,’ not some misleading fabrications.” 

Precinct 3 Commissioner Allen shared how the evidence was gathered and how the petition was filed. He said, “We were getting the evidence together. We did not want it out [in the public] until we got it together. Once McCarver got all the paperwork together, Sonny Baker met up with him to sign the petition. Later on, I went to sign the petition and together filed the petition.”

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