Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton fled his home to avoid receiving a subpoena on Monday in a federal lawsuit brought by groups seeking to help Texans get abortions outside of the state. State, according to court documents.
Paxton raced from the garage of his house in McKinney, Texas, in a truck driven by his wife, State Senator Angela Paxton, while refusing to accept documents from a bailiff, according to an affidavit filed Monday in US District Court in Austin. .
The Paxtons left without taking the documents, which were left on the floor by the house, server Ernesto Martin Herrera wrote in the sworn affidavit.
The subpoena ordered Paxton, a Republican, to testify at a hearing Tuesday morning in a civil lawsuit in which several Texas-based nonprofits want to resume helping pregnant residents obtain abortions in other States. This includes paying out-of-state abortion providers and providing financial assistance to those seeking abortions, as well as providing interstate travel to these providers.
The nonprofits say their abortion assistance activities ceased shortly before the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, who has enshrined federal abortion rights for decades, in a 5-4 vote in June. The High Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization also dismissed another case, Planned Parenthood v. Casey, who had largely upheld Roe’s right to abortion.
Paxton in a pair of tweets late Monday night claimed he cared about his family and attacked the media for reporting on the affidavit, without denying the substance of the document.
“This is a ridiculous waste of time and the media should be ashamed of themselves,” Paxton tweeted in response to an article from the Texas Tribune.
“Across the country, conservatives have faced threats to their security — many threats that have received little coverage or condemnation from the mainstream media,” her tweet said.
“It is clear that the media wants to stir up another controversy regarding my work as Attorney General, so they are attacking me for having the audacity to avoid having a stranger linger outside my house and worry about the safety and well-being of my family,” he said in a second tweet.
Herrera’s affidavit says he arrived at Paxton’s home at 8:28 a.m. Monday and was greeted at the front door by a woman who identified herself as Angela. When he told her he was trying to deliver the subpoenas to Ken Paxton, she told him the AG was on the phone.
Herrera, who said he recognized Ken Paxton inside the house through glass on the door, offered to wait for him. Angela replied that Paxton “was in a rush to get out,” according to Herrera, who observed a black Chevy truck in the driveway and then saw another car pull up there.
At around 9:40 a.m., Herrera said he saw Paxton exit his garage. Herrera walked up the driveway towards Paxton and shouted his name, at which point “he turned and ran inside the house through the same door in the garage”.
A few minutes later, Angela got out of the truck and opened the driver’s side door and the door behind it, Herrera wrote. Minutes after starting the truck, “I saw Mr. Paxton RAN from the door inside the garage to the back door behind the driver’s side,” Herrera wrote.
“I approached the lorry and called out loud to him by name and stated that I had court documents for him. Mr. Paxton ignored me and continued walking towards the lorry After determining that Mr. Paxton was not going to take the subpoenas from me, I said I was serving him legal documents and leaving them on the floor where he could get them,” Herrera wrote.
“I then put the documents on the ground next to the truck. The service ended at 9:50 a.m. He got into the truck leaving the documents on the ground, then the two vehicles left,” he said. writing.
In July, Paxton sued the Biden administration over Department of Health and Human Services guidelines that hospitals and doctors must perform abortions in emergency situations.
Paxton, who was elected attorney general in 2014 and re-elected in 2018, has been under investigation for securities fraud for seven years, although the case has not gone to trial. He won his Republican primary in May, beating GOP challenger George P. Bush in a runoff.