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CAUSE NO.

25,959

CODY WOMMACK,

Contestant,
v.
MIKE ALCORN,
MARIE SKIPPER
Contestees.

Filed 1/11/2017 5:19:03 PM


Gwen Ashworth
District Clerk
Morris County, Texas
By: Londa Clark
Deputy

IN THE DISTRICT COURT

OF MORRIS COUNTY, TEXAS

176th JUDICIAL DISTRICT

CONTESTANTS RESPONSE TO THE MOTION FOR SANCTIONS


TO THE HONORABLE DISTRICT JUDGE ALFONSO CHARLES

NOW COMES Contestant CODY WOMMACK, represented pro se, and files this response to
Contestees Marie Skippers Motion for Sanctions. In support, Contestant respectfully offers the
following for consideration by the court:
I. BACKGROUND

1.

On June 30, 2016 Contestant brought an election contest suit against Contestees Marie

Skipper and Mike Alcorn. Texas Election Code 232.003 defines who is a contestee in an election
contest. In Contestee Marie Skippers Motion for Summary Judgment, Contestee cites Texas Election
Code 232.003 in relevant part:
(a) If a contested election is for nomination or election to an office for which only one person
is to be nominated or elected, the contestee is:
(1) the opposing candidate who is officially determined to be nominated or elected, or in
the case of a tie for the most votes, each of the opposing tied candidates
However, Contestee omitted the proceeding relevant part:


(b) If a contested election is for election to an office for which more than one person is to be
elected from the same set of candidates, any one or more of the candidates who are officially
determined to be elected or to be tied with another candidate for election may be a contestee.
The court may require the joinder of any of the candidates who are not named as
contestees.
II. MOTION IS INADEQUATE

2.

Contestees motion simply cites part of Rule 13 of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure to

claim that Contestants Election Contest is groundless and brought in bad faith or groundless and
brought for the purpose of harassment. Contestee does not even specify whether she is claiming that
Contestants motion is in bad faith or whether it is for the purpose of harassment.
III. ARGUMENTS AND AUTHORITIES

3.

Contestee and Contestant clearly disagree over the interpretation of substantive law in this

case, namely Texas Election Code 232.003, Texas Education Code 11.055, and Texas Education
Code 11.057 (a), (b). But the purpose of the sanctions mechanism is not for secondary litigation
over interpretation. Though pleadings carry the presumption of good faith, Contestee has provided
no evidence of bad faith, bad motives, or harassment. Beyond mere evidence, bad faith must be proven.
Alejandro v. Robstown Indep. Sch. Dist., 131 S.W.3d 663, 670 (Tex. App.Corpus Christi 2004, no
pet.) Rule 13 sanctions are intended to deal with those egregious situations where the worst of the
bar uses our honored system for ill motive without regard to reason and the guiding principles of the
law. Dyson Descendant Corp. v. Sonat Exploration Co., 861 S.W.2d 942, 951 (Tex. App.Houston
[1st Dist.] 1993, no writ). Because of the inadequacy of Contestees motion, the most likely
explanation for said motion is an attempt at intimidation which is forbidden in law. See Dyson
Descendant Corp. v. Sonat Exploration Co., 861 S.W.2d at 951.


4.

Bad faith is not interpreted as bad judgment, negligence, or incompetency but instead refers

to conscious wrongdoing for dishonest, discriminatory, or malicious purpose. See Parker v. Walton,
233 S.W.3d 535, 537 (Tex. App.Houston [14th Dist.] 2007, no pet.); see also Olibas v. Gomez,
242 S.W.3d 527, 534 (Tex. App.El Paso 2007, pet. denied); Marlin v. Robertson, 307 S.W.3d 418,
435 (Tex. App.San Antonio 2009, no pet.). The court must presume Contestants good faith, Low
v. Henry, 221 S.W.3d 609, 614 (Tex. 2007); and the movant must go beyond incompetent evidence
or speculation Unifund CCR Partners v. Villa, 299 S.W.3d at 97. Contestee has provided nothing
more than speculation.
5.

While the Court can only guess at whether Contestee is claiming that Contestants pleadings

are in bad faith or for the purpose of harassment, Contestee would also have to prove that a Contestant
pleading was groundless for Rule 13 sanctions to be appropriate. Groundless has been ruled by the
Courts to mean that a pleading carries absolutely no basis in law or fact and that good faith arguments
could not be made for the extension, modification, or reversal of existing law. Alpert v. Crain, Caton
& James, P.C., 178 S.W.3d 398, 411 (Tex. App.Houston [1st Dist.] 2005, pet. denied). Even if
this court agrees with Contestees on the legal points of the case, there would be no grounds for
imposition of sanctions under Rule 13. Falk & Mayfield L.L.P. v. Molzan, 974 S.W.2d 821, 824 (Tex.
App.Houston [14th Dist.] 1998, pet. denied)
IV. AMOUNT OF SANCTIONS

6.

In addition, Contestee requests sanctions in the amount of FIVE THOUSAND AND

NO/100 DOLLARS ($5,000.00). She states that $4,098.58 in legal fees and expenses have been
incurred on behalf of Contestee Marie Skipper. Notably, Contestee does not state to whom the
expenses were incurred. In Contestants filed Petitioners Motion to Enjoin V. Jay Youngblood from


Representing or Advising Contestees, he stated that he held on knowledge and belief that the school
attorney V. Jay Youngblood was representing Contestee Marie Skipper pro bono. Marie Skippers
spouse Joe Skipper stated publicly, sometime before September 14, 2016, that Contestee was being
represented by the school attorney pro bono. See Exhibit A.
V. CONCLUSION

For the reasons stated above, Contestant respectfully requests that this Court deny
Contestees motion.

Respectfully submitted,
___/s/Cody Wommack__________
Cody Wommack, pro se
220 Haley
Lone Star, TX 75668
979-229-5805
codywommack@gmail.com

CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE

I certify that a true and correct copy of the above was served on the following through efiling, e-serving, and electronic on January 11, 2017.

Jay Youngblood
State Bar of Texas No. 22220200
jyoungblood@powell-leon.com
POWELL & LEON, L.L.P
1001 ESE Loop 323, Suite 450
Tyler, Texas 75701


___/s/Cody Wommack_________
Cody Wommack