DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - A showdown over masks in a Dallas County Commissioner's Court meeting has led to a lawsuit and an effort to remove Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins.
County Commissioner J.J. Koch told CBS 11 he was blindsided by Judge Jenkins when Jenkins forced him to leave a Dallas County Commissioner's Court meeting for not wearing a mask.
"I got to find out about it around 9:01 as I'm sitting there waiting for the invitation," said Koch, County Commissioner for District 2.
Koch says he would have been willing to work with Jenkins over a new rule requiring masks in meetings.
Instead he said he was ordered to leave even though he says he's been vaccinated.
"I was shocked at the audacity of Judge Jenkins," said Koch. "Fortunately I was allowed to leave with my dignity."
Koch has filed a lawsuit against the county judge accusing him over overstepping his authority and violating Gov. Greg Abbott's orders prohibiting mask mandates.
Koch's attorney, Warren Norred, even seeks in the lawsuit to remove Judge Jenkins from his elected position for abusing his power
"It's your standard tiny tyrant activity, you see this all the time," said Norred. "Here's a guy nobody knew who he was prior to COVID-19. Now he's the big cheese."
In a statement, Judge Jenkins told CBS 11, "The enemy is the virus and not each other. Masking indoors is an important public safety measure."
A judge has denied a temporary restraining order to stop Jenkins from requiring masks, setting the stage for another possible mask showdown when commissioners meet again on August 17.
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