SAN ANTONIO - After 30 years serving Bexar County as a Justice of the Peace, Keith Baker has announced his intent to resign at the end of the year.
Back in May, News 4 WOAI Trouble Shooter Mireya Villarreal exposed a major problem with trash and illegal dumping in the Camelot II neighborhood. In an effort to help clean things up and hold people accountable, she asked for information regarding citations and tickets issued in that area. That's when county officials started to take a closer look at Precinct 3 and Justice of the Peace Keith Baker. Turns out, Baker had a backlog of nearly 10,000 warrants and he was refusing to issue those warrants after one of his clerk positions was cut last year. As a result, the county lost out on more than $750,000 this year.
Commissioner's court, along with District Attorney Susan Reed, felt Baker was retaliating against the county. And last week during a budget meeting, Commissioner Kevin Wolff asked the DA's office to research removing JP Baker from his elected position.
Just this past weekend Baker brought in staff and processed nearly 1,000 warrants, in an effort to try and fix the problem. Unfortunately, both DA Reed and Commissioner Wolff felt, with more than 9,000 warrants still lingering, it was too little too late. That's when they decided to sit down with Baker and work on a real solution.
"Judge Baker has served this community for 30 years and done a whole lot. He's decided he's going to retire at the end of the year,” Commissioner Kevin Wolff said. “But we're all going to work together to figure out how to get this backload of warrants out and catch up on some of the things that have fallen behind.”
District Attorney Susan Reed also told us, despite these recent issues, she believes Justice of the Peace Keith Baker was devoted to his staff and his district. She commends him on this admirable and difficult decision.