Judge Skeen will preside over Patrick "Booger Red" Kelly retrial - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Judge Jack Skeen will preside over Patrick "Booger Red" Kelly retrial

By Layron Livingston - bio | email

SMITH COUNTY, TEXAS (KLTV) - Judge Alvin Khoury made his ruling, Friday morning, after weeks of testimony and review. Khoury said there is no reason to recuse Jack Skeen.

Attorney Thad Davidson has been fighting to have 241st Judge Jack Skeen removed from his client's case since this past summer. Patrick "Booger Red" Kelly was the third Mineola Child Sex Ring defendant. 

Kelly was convicted in August 2008 of engaging in organized criminal activity for his alleged role in child sex ring. This past June, a Houston appeals court found the case should be reversed and retried. The appeals court found the 241st court made numerous trial errors and noted the closing argument made by former prosecutor Joe Murphy was improper. 

During Friday's hearing, Judge Khoury said, certainly, Judge Skeen could have done a better job in the trial, but said Skeen is also human. "Every trial judge has a few moments he'd like to take back."

Khoury also recalled testimony from former jurors and a local defense attorney who testified to Skeen's fairness. 

Kelly's attorney, Thad Davidson expressed his disappointment in the decision.

"I am still gravely concerned about whether or not Patrick Kelly is going to receive a fair trial in the future," he said. "I'm still gravely concerned about whether Judge Skeen will give Patrick Kelly a fair trial."

Kelly retrial date has not been set. Five of the remaining Mineola Sex Ring defendants, including Jamie Pittman, who will also be retried, also remain unset.

Davidson tells KLTV the state has filed a motion to try those defendants together. We asked the District Attorney Matt Bingham for a comment on Friday's decision. He declined to speak with us because of the restrictive and protective order in the case.

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