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Judge To Decide If Lawsuit To Remove Dallas DA Will Move Forward

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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - A hearing about the future of Dallas County District Attorney Susan Hawk is scheduled for this week.

This Friday a judge will hear arguments whether the suit to remove Hawk should go on -- or be dropped.

The lawsuit, filed by Ellis county DA Patrick Wilson last month claims a former Hawk employee says the DA isn't fit for office. That employee, former administrative chief Cindy Stormer sued Hawk and asked a Dallas County judge to temporarily remove her pending a jury trial to determine her fitness for office. Stormer's petition, filed on behalf of the state of Texas, alleges that Hawk should be removed from office for incompetency and official misconduct.

Last year Hawk spent time in rehab for prescription drug use and received treatment for depression.

Her tenure in office since last January was marked by controversy and drama within the office.

Hawk fired some of her top managers, including Bill Wirskye, her initial choice to serve as First Assistant DA.

Some former employees fired by Hawk said she was paranoid and accused even them of being "out to get her."

Hawk also dismantled the office's new digital forensics lab, designed to speed up criminal cases. Before the lab was created by former DA Craig Watkins, the county had to rely on similar labs from federal agencies, which caused delays in prosecuting cases.

Hawk receives more than $210,000 a year. The state provides $140,000 for her salary, and Dallas County pays the remainder and an additional $7,500 in car allowance.

In Texas, there isn't a set amount of vacation days elected officials receive. It's up to them to decide how much time off to take, but many follow the policies that apply to their employees.

(©2016 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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