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Former official charged in Texas DA slayings

KAUFMAN, Texas — A former Texas justice of the peace seeking revenge for a theft conviction that ended his judicial career carried out a plot with his wife to kill the men who prosecuted him, authorities said Thursday.

Eric Lyle Williams, and his wife, Kim Williams, both 46, are charged with capital murder in the slayings of Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland, his wife, Cynthia, and assistant prosecutor Mark Hasse.

Hasse and McLelland successfully prosecuted Eric Williams for theft last year, leading him to lose his law license and his position as justice of the peace.

Authorities allege Williams was the gunman in all of the slayings. They say his wife was the get-away driver when he shot Hasse as he walked to work in January. They contend she was a passenger when her husband drove to the McLelland home to carry out those killings two months later, early on March 30.

According to investigators, the prosecutors had been concerned Williams might be a threat to them, carrying handguns after his theft conviction last year. Though prosecutors had sought prison time for Williams, he was sentenced to probation.

Eric Williams was held in lieu of $23 million bail; his wife's bail was set at $3 million.

Arrest warrants lay out a meticulous revenge plan, in which Eric Williams rented a storage unit in a friend's name to store a cache of weapons and a car that authorities say is tied to the McLellands' killings.

Former official charged in Texas DA slayings 04/18/13 [Last modified: Thursday, April 18, 2013 8:19pm]
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