Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton today applauded the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas in Dallas for preventing the release of dangerous inmates from the Dallas County Jail, including killers, rapists, arsonists and armed robbers. The ruling stopped the American Civil Liberties Union’s lawsuit from upending Texas’s criminal justice system. 

“We intervened in this case to prevent the ACLU’s attempt to force an indiscriminate and unlawful release of potentially violent criminals into our communities from Dallas jails,” said Attorney General Paxton. “I applaud the court for upholding the rule of law by recognizing the need to simultaneously protect the health and safety of Texans during the COVID-19 pandemic, while maintaining the requirements of our criminal justice system.” 

Attorney General Ken Paxton also successfully blocked improper inmate releases in both Harris County and Travis County. The Texas Supreme Court stopped an unlawful decision by a state district court in Travis County which would have blocked Gov. Abbott’s Executive Order GA-13 and allowed the release of violent inmates en masse. Within days of the Texas Supreme Court ruling, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas in Houston also denied temporary restraining orders and prevented the release of thousands of potentially dangerous inmates in Harris County, including those charged with violent crimes or who have a violent criminal history. 

Read a copy of the order here

For information and guidelines on the safe and strategic reopening of Texas, please visit the Texas Department of State Health Services website.