Case: Brooks v. Abbott

1:21-cv-00991 | U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas

Filed Date: Nov. 3, 2021

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

This is a redistricting case challenging Plan S2168 as racially discriminatory for drawing Tarrant County across three state senate districts. On November 3, 2021, six Black and Latinx registered voters and a state senator filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. Plaintiffs sued Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Texas Secretary of State John Scott in their official capacities under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for violations of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (52 U.S.C. §…

This is a redistricting case challenging Plan S2168 as racially discriminatory for drawing Tarrant County across three state senate districts.

On November 3, 2021, six Black and Latinx registered voters and a state senator filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. Plaintiffs sued Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Texas Secretary of State John Scott in their official capacities under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for violations of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (52 U.S.C. § 10301 et seq.) and the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments of the U.S. Constitution. Represented by private counsel, plaintiffs sought declaratory and injunctive relief, as well as attorneys' fees and costs. The injunctive relief plaintiffs sought included: the setting of a reasonable deadline for State authorities to enact or adopt a redistricting plan that does not dilute, cancel out, or minimize the voting strength of minority voters and, if they do not, ordering the new senate redistricting plan, and the retention of jurisdiction to render any further orders necessary to cure the violation. Plaintiffs claimed that the legislature cracked senate district 10 into three districts with “tortured shapes” submerging minority voters in majority white districts, thereby diluting minority voters’ ability to elect their preferred candidates, and failed to create the new majority Black/Latino coalition senate district in Tarrant County required by Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. The case was initially assigned to District Judge Lee Yeakel, but a three-judge panel was convened under 28 U.S.C. § 2284 that also included Circuit Judge Jerry E. Smith (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit) and District Judge Jeffrey V. Brown (U.S. District Court for  the Southern District of Texas). The case is currently assigned to District Judge Andrew W. Austin.

On November 19, 2021, before defendants filed any response, District Judge David C. Guarderrama, who presided over a separately filed lawsuit, issued an Order Consolidating Cases, consolidating the Brooks v. Abbott lawsuit with six other lawsuits.  The order specified that a three-judge panel comprised of Judge David C. Guaderrama, Judge Jerry E. Smith, and Judge Jeffrey V. Brown would decide all matters.  LULAC v. Abbott, No. 3:21-cv-00259 (W.D. Tex.), the first-filed case, was designated as the lead case, and all future filings were ordered to be filed under that number.

Litigation in LULAC v. Abbott continues.  

Summary Authors

Kelly Tsai (1/30/2024)

Related Cases

Mexican American Legislative C v. State of Texas, Western District of Texas (2021)

League of United Latin v. Abbott, Western District of Texas (None)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/60695977/parties/brooks-v-abbott/


Judge(s)

Austin, Andrew W. (Texas)

Attorney for Plaintiff

Brazil, K. Scott (Texas)

Dunn, Chad W. (Texas)

Gaber, Mark P. (Texas)

Gaines, Jesse (Texas)

Attorney for Defendant

show all people

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document
1

1:21-cv-00991

Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief

Nov. 3, 2021

Nov. 3, 2021

Complaint
9

1:21-cv-00991

Order Constituting Three-Judge Court

Nov. 8, 2021

Nov. 8, 2021

Order/Opinion
14

1:21-cv-00991

Order Consolidating Cases

League of United Latin American Citizens v. Abbott

Nov. 19, 2021

Nov. 19, 2021

Order/Opinion

2021 WL 2021

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/60695977/brooks-v-abbott/

Last updated April 8, 2024, 3 a.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link Date / Link
1

COMPLAINT FOR DECLARATORY AND INJUNCTIVE RELIEF ( Filing fee $ 402 receipt number 0542-15403288). No Summons requested at this time, filed by Deborah Spell, Phyllis Goines, Beverly Powell, Felipe Gutierrez, Eva Bonilla, Roy Charles Brooks, Clara Faulkner. (Attachments: # 1 Civil Cover Sheet)(Dunn, Chad) (Entered: 11/03/2021)

1 Civil Cover Sheet

View on PACER

Nov. 3, 2021

Nov. 3, 2021

Clearinghouse

Case assigned to Judge Lee Yeakel. CM WILL NOW REFLECT THE JUDGE INITIALS AS PART OF THE CASE NUMBER. PLEASE APPEND THESE JUDGE INITIALS TO THE CASE NUMBER ON EACH DOCUMENT THAT YOU FILE IN THIS CASE. (cj)

Nov. 3, 2021

Nov. 3, 2021

PACER

If ordered by the court, all referrals and consents in this case will be assigned to Magistrate Judge Lane (cj)

Nov. 3, 2021

Nov. 3, 2021

PACER
2

MOTION to Appear Pro Hac Vice by Chad W. Dunn (for Mark Gaber) ( Filing fee $ 100 receipt number 0542-15403503) by on behalf of Eva Bonilla, Roy Charles Brooks, Clara Faulkner, Phyllis Goines, Felipe Gutierrez, Beverly Powell, Deborah Spell. (Dunn, Chad) (Entered: 11/03/2021)

Nov. 3, 2021

Nov. 3, 2021

PACER
3

MOTION to Appear Pro Hac Vice by Chad W. Dunn (for Jessie Gaines) ( Filing fee $ 100 receipt number 0542-15403521) by on behalf of Eva Bonilla, Roy Charles Brooks, Clara Faulkner, Phyllis Goines, Felipe Gutierrez, Beverly Powell, Deborah Spell. (Dunn, Chad) (Entered: 11/03/2021)

Nov. 3, 2021

Nov. 3, 2021

PACER

Case Assigned/Reassigned

Nov. 3, 2021

Nov. 3, 2021

PACER

To be Referred to AU Mag Judge

Nov. 3, 2021

Nov. 3, 2021

PACER
4

ORDER GRANTING 2 Mark P. Gaber's Motion to Appear Pro Hac Vice for Plaintiffs. Pursuant to our Administrative Policies and Procedures for Electronic Filing, the attorney hereby granted to practice pro hac vice in this case must register for electronic filing with our court within 10 days of this order. Signed by Judge Lee Yeakel. (jv2) (Entered: 11/04/2021)

Nov. 4, 2021

Nov. 4, 2021

PACER
5

ORDER GRANTING 3 Jesse L. Gaine's Motion to Appear Pro Hac Vice for Plaintiffs. Pursuant to our Administrative Policies and Procedures for Electronic Filing, the attorney hereby granted to practice pro hac vice in this case must register for electronic filing with our court within 10 days of this order. Signed by Judge Lee Yeakel. (jv2) (Entered: 11/04/2021)

Nov. 4, 2021

Nov. 4, 2021

PACER
6

Letter from United States District Judge Lee Yeakel directed to Priscilla R. Owen, Chief Judge, United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. (jv2) (Entered: 11/05/2021)

Nov. 5, 2021

Nov. 5, 2021

PACER
7

REQUEST FOR ISSUANCE OF SUMMONS by Eva Bonilla, Roy Charles Brooks, Clara Faulkner, Phyllis Goines, Felipe Gutierrez, Beverly Powell, Deborah Spell. (Dunn, Chad) (Entered: 11/08/2021)

Nov. 8, 2021

Nov. 8, 2021

PACER
8

Summons Issued as to All Defendants. (jv2) (Entered: 11/08/2021)

Nov. 8, 2021

Nov. 8, 2021

PACER
9

ORDER CONSTITUING THREE-JUDGE COURT: Judge Jerry E. Smith, Circuit Judge, 5th Circuit Court of Appeals; Judge Lee Yeakel, U.S. District Court Judge; and Judge Jeffrey V. Brown, U.S. District Court Judge, Southern District of TX. Signed by Priscilla R. Owen, Chief Judge, United State Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit.(jv2) (Entered: 11/08/2021)

Nov. 8, 2021

Nov. 8, 2021

Clearinghouse
10

SUMMONS Returned Executed by Deborah Spell, Phyllis Goines, Beverly Powell, Felipe Gutierrez, Eva Bonilla, Roy Charles Brooks, Clara Faulkner. Greg Abbott served on 11/8/2021, answer due 11/29/2021. (Dunn, Chad) (Entered: 11/10/2021)

Nov. 10, 2021

Nov. 10, 2021

PACER
11

SUMMONS Returned Executed by Deborah Spell, Phyllis Goines, Beverly Powell, Felipe Gutierrez, Eva Bonilla, Roy Charles Brooks, Clara Faulkner. John Scott served on 11/8/2021, answer due 11/29/2021. (Dunn, Chad) (Entered: 11/10/2021)

Nov. 10, 2021

Nov. 10, 2021

PACER
12

NOTICE of Attorney Appearance by Patrick K. Sweeten on behalf of Greg Abbott, John Scott. Attorney Patrick K. Sweeten added to party Greg Abbott(pty:dft), Attorney Patrick K. Sweeten added to party John Scott(pty:dft) (Sweeten, Patrick) (Entered: 11/12/2021)

Nov. 12, 2021

Nov. 12, 2021

PACER
13

NOTICE of Attorney Appearance by William Thomas Thompson on behalf of Greg Abbott, John Scott. Attorney William Thomas Thompson added to party Greg Abbott(pty:dft), Attorney William Thomas Thompson added to party John Scott(pty:dft) (Thompson, William) (Entered: 11/12/2021)

Nov. 12, 2021

Nov. 12, 2021

PACER
14

ORDER Consolidating Cases. This case is consolidated into lead case LULAC v. Abbott, No. 3:21-CV-00259 (W.D. Tex., El Paso Division). All future pleadings, motions, orother documents should be filed under that cause number. Signed by Judge David C Guaderrama. (lt) (Entered: 11/19/2021)

Nov. 19, 2021

Nov. 19, 2021

RECAP
14

ORDER Consolidating Cases. This case is consolidated into lead case LULAC v. Abbott, No. 3:21-CV-00259 (W.D. Tex., El Paso Division). All future pleadings, motions, orother documents should be filed under that cause number. Signed by Judge David C Guaderrama. (lt) (Entered: 11/19/2021)

Nov. 19, 2021

Nov. 19, 2021

RECAP
15

Order Reassigning Case

May 12, 2023

May 12, 2023

PACER
15

Order Reassigning Case

May 12, 2023

May 12, 2023

PACER

Case Details

State / Territory: Texas

Case Type(s):

Election/Voting Rights

Special Collection(s):

Law Firm Antiracism Alliance (LFAA) project

Key Dates

Filing Date: Nov. 3, 2021

Case Ongoing: Unknown

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Six Black and Latina/Latino citizens who are registered voters and a state senator

Public Interest Lawyer: No

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Texas Secretary of State John Scott their official capacities, State

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

Voting Rights Act, section 2, 52 U.S.C. § 10301 (previously 42 U.S.C. § 1973)

Constitutional Clause(s):

Equal Protection

Fifteenth Amendment

Available Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Unknown

Nature of Relief:

Unknown

Source of Relief:

Unknown

Issues

Voting:

Redistricting/district composition

Voting: General & Misc.