Former Williamson County DA Jana Duty found dead

Williamson County

Editor’s Note: On September 16, 2019, the autopsy report for Jana Duty was released to KXAN. Her manner of death was ruled a suicide.
If you or anyone you know is having suicidal thoughts or tendencies, you can get help at the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Former Williamson County District Attorney Jana Duty was found dead Wednesday in South Texas, Williamson County public affairs manager Connie Odom confirmed to KXAN. 

Odom said most people close to Duty are choosing to not comment on her death as investigations continue.

“We are heartbroken at the loss and our thoughts and prayers are with her husband, children and grandchildren,” said Williamson County Judge Bill Gravell in a written statement. 

Duty was elected as the D.A. in Williamson County in 2013 when she defeated incumbent John Bradley. She served for three years before losing in the 2016 Republican primary to the current D.A., Shawn Dick. 

Her time in office was fraught with controversy, including a weekend jail stint in 2015 when a judge found her in contempt of court for violating a gag order in the murder investigation of Crispin Harmel. She was later sanctioned by the State Bar of Texas for professional misconduct related to the gag order and intentionally withholding evidence from defense attorneys. 

Rockport officials are releasing few details surrounding Duty’s death and investigations are ongoing. 

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates. 

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