Government & Politics

Defeated Cass County prosecutor Teresa Hensley forms committee for judgeship bid

Teresa Hensley
Teresa Hensley

Cass County prosecutor Teresa Hensley is planning to return to her family’s Raymore law office in January after losing a re-election bid in November.

But she could have something bigger up her sleeve for 2016.

Hensley, a Democrat, filed paperwork with the Missouri Ethics Commission on Dec. 19 to create an election committee for the 17th District Division 2 circuit judge race in 2016. The circuit includes Cass and Johnson counties in Missouri.

If she runs, Hensley could face Circuit Judge Michael Wagner, a Republican who has been in office since 2008.

A post on the Cass County Missouri Young Republicans Facebook page also suggests Hensley has been aggressively lobbying Gov. Jay Nixon to appoint her to fill the vacancy as the Harrison County prosecutor.

In 2012, Hensley challenged Republican U.S. Rep. Vicky Hartzler of Missouri’s 4th District and was defeated. Before being appointed Cass County prosecutor by Democratic Gov. Bob Holden in 2005, she ran an unsuccessful race for state representative in 2002.

During the Nov. 4 general election, Hensley lost to Ben Butler, 31, a criminal defense attorney who was seeking public office for the first time.

Butler captured 53 percent of the votes to Hensley’s 47 percent.