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Court of Inquiry Cost in the Thousands

The dust may have settled regarding the Judge Rick Davis Court of Inquiry request of Shane Phelps, but the bill remains. Brazos County will be paying the thousands of dollars of attorneys’ fees and other costs accumulated during the inquiry. The total cost is estimated over $50,000.

Following Thursday's ruling clearing Shane Phelps of any wrongdoing, Brazos County is left footing the bill for the inquiry. It's a price tag Brazos County Judge Randy Sims didn't know Friday morning.

"I was very disappointed because the judge had told me earlier on that she was assigned this duty that she would send me an estimate of what it was going to cost Brazos County, and I have yet to receive the estimate," Judge Sims said.

That estimate is more than $50,000.

Attorney Pro Tem Buck Files set his cost at $350 per hour. He estimates he worked 90 hours on the case for a grand total of $31,500.

The county will have to reimburse Shane Phelps $15,000 for his defense attorney Cynthia Williams.

And the county auditor estimate for meals and lodging for Judge Cynthia Stevens Kent and her staff is close to $2,000.

Court security is also an added cost. The Brazos County Sheriff's Office says over 64 hours of overtime were racked up by deputies. The county auditor’s office estimates the cost at $2,000, and an official record of the court proceedings will cost the county about $5,500.

All costs combined, Brazos County will be paying an estimated $56,000.


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