U.S. Department of Justice conducting investigation in Hockley County

The U.S. Department of Justice is conducting an investigation in Hockley County, confirmed special agent Jennifer Cejpek Thursday morning.

Cejpek said she cannot comment on the case since it is an open investigation.

James Warren, Hockley County Chief Deputy, said he and other citizens, including his wife DeRenda Warren, submitted complaints to the secretary of state following the primary elections in March. Warren said he interviewed with Agent Cejpek on August 24 in regards to the complaints.

DeRenda Warren was also on the primary ballot, running for the U.S. Congressional seat for District 19. Republican candidate  Jodey Arrington won the primary in a run-off election against Glen Robertson.

Warren told the News-Press Thursday that the complaints are in regards to candidates who were in violation of election code 61.001 and 61.003. 

County Judge, Sharla Baldridge, said she had yet to be formally informed there was investigation taking place.

“To my knowledge, nothing illegal occurred during the election,” Baldridge said.

Baldridge was not County Judge at the time of the election.

Cheryl Smart, elections administrator for Hockley County, said she did not have a comment at this time because the county had yet to be officially notified that there was an investigation taking place.

At the beginning of August, Warren filed as a write-in candidate for the office of Hockley County Sheriff, challenging Scifres for the position. Cejpek told the News-Press she would release a comment as soon as the investigation allowed information to be publicly released. This is a developing story and will be updated as more information is made available.

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