On Friday, prosecutors revealed additional information that will be of use for Texas state Rep. Dawnna Dukes' corruption trial. Dukes has served in the Texas House of Representatives since 1994 but is now facing a misdemeanor trial over the "abuse of official capacity."
Dukes was originally put on trial for allegedly giving an inappropriate raise to a legislative aide. Dukes was accused of paying an aide extra money in order to drive her daughter to and from school, all on the taxpayers' dime.
Now, Travis County prosecutors have added several complaints to the list of wrongs that Dukes has allegedly done. They had to present their evidence in a court document in preparation for the trial.
Among the 19 "extraneous acts" that prosecutors will use against the Austin Democrat, is one bizarre online bill. According to the filing, Dukes paid $51,348 for an online psychic between December 2014 and January 2016. This averages out to about $1,000 per week.
Dukes' lawyer, Shaun Clarke, said that the information has "nothing to do with the case," whether it is true or false. However, District Attorney Margaret Moore believes that combined with the other filings, the online bill shows an instability in the representative.
Other "extraneous acts" that were listed in the filings include examples of misuse of time and medication. Prosecutors said that Dukes was absent for roll call 65% of the time during the 2017 legislative regular season and failed to submit her campaign finance report in a timely fashion. She also arrived late to court settings on two separate dates.
Reportedly, Dukes was also "noticeably impaired" while performing legislative duties at the Capitol on March 29. She showed up late to a hearing for the House Appropriations Committee and said, "I know I'm talking a lot. I'm full of morphine and will be headed out of here soon."
Dawnna Dukes will be facing her misdemeanor trial on October 16.
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