Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

January 24, 2014

Peacock responds to writ filed against court-at-law candidate

April Barbe
Jacksonville Daily Progress

JACKSONVILLE — Interim County Court-at-Law Judge Kelley Peacock said Thursday the petition for writ filed against fellow candidate Janice Crosby Stone is a matter of her judiciary duty.

"As a member of the judiciary, an officer of the court and a candidate myself, I have an obligation to ensure that any candidate is eligible and qualified to hold the office," Peacock said. "It was my obligation and duty to bring this to the attention of the higher authorities."

The matter at hand is whether or not Stone has lived in Cherokee County for at least two years, which is the minimum amount of time allowed to be eligible to run for a county office.

Stone was appalled to find out about the residency concern this week, saying "I was born and raised in Jacksonville, and my family still lives here."

Peacock told The Daily Progress she is not attempting to manipulate the elections, as stated by Stone in an article published Thursday.

"The voters deserve to know the truth and deserve a Judge whom they can trust," Peacock said.

Peacock and her attorney John S. Ament filed paperwork with Jerry Rix, the Cherokee County Republican Party chairman, on Monday.

Peacock also discussed the portion of the writ that focuses on Stone voting in Williamson County in 2012, during which time Stone says she was a resident of Cherokee County.

Stone maintains that she has lived and worked as an attorney in both counties. She said she re-established her residency in Jacksonville in 2011.

"I would ask Mrs. Stone to account for her public voting record, her sworn application to be a notary public and her homestead exemption all indicating her residence is in Williamson County," Peacock said.

Stone has until noon on Monday, Jan. 27, to file a response to the writ that is calling for her to be declared ineligible for the Republican primary election, slated for March 4.

Peacock, Stone and a third candidate, Dan Childs filed for the court-at-law seat vacated by

former Judge Craig Fletcher late 2013.