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Attorney of former Tyler nurse who killed 4 patients indicted on prostitution charge

The document states Hayes began exchanging texts with the undercover officer on Oct. 5 for roughly two hours that afternoon.

TYLER, Texas — A lawyer who defended a former Tyler nurse sentenced to death for killing four patients has been indicted for accusations of seeking out sex for payment while the trial was ongoing last October. 

Phillip Wayne Hayes, 48, of Dallas, was indicted May 10 on a solicitation of prostitution charge in the 7th District Court, according to online court records.

He has a plea hearing set for May 25 and a sentencing hearing currently scheduled for June 16, records show. 

Hayes was arrested Nov. 5 last year and released the same day on a $2,000 bond, according to Smith County Jail records.

According to an arrest affidavit, Smith County undercover officers posted ads on a website commonly used for human trafficking and prostitution.

The document states Hayes began exchanging texts with the undercover officer on Oct. 5 for roughly two hours that afternoon. Investigators identified Hayes using his phone number and law enforcement database searches.

Oct. 5 was the sixth day of the William George Davis trial, in which Hayes and fellow attorney Douglas Parks worked on the defense.

The trial began Sept. 28 and ended Oct. 27. Davis was ultimately sentenced to death for injecting air into patients’ arterial systems while he was a nurse at Christus Trinity Mother Frances Louis and Peaches Owen Heart Hospital in Tyler, causing them to have brain damage and later die.

Another search showed Hayes owned a 2020 black Land Rover Defender. The affidavit reads Hayes asked for an hour of time for him to pay $110 for sex. After Hayes requested, the undercover officer gave him a location to meet around 6 p.m.

An arrest team saw Hayes’ vehicle come to the location, and he was arrested and transported for an interview, the affidavit stated.

Because of Hayes’ involvement as counsel in the Davis trial, officers made the decision to get a warrant at a later date.

Smith County District Attorney Jacob Putman said in January he recused himself and his office from prosecuting the case to "protect the record on the (William) Davis case." Putman said Upshur County District Attorney Billy Byrd is prosecuting the case. 

Hayes’ law practice, Phillip Hayes Attorney at Law, is based out of Dallas. 

According to the Texas Bar Association, Hayes has been licensed to practice law since 1999. His law firm website states the office focuses entirely on criminal defense in Texas state and federal courts.

RELATED: Verdict is in: Convicted ex-nurse sentenced to death

RELATED: Smith Co. District Attorney's Office recuses itself from prosecuting lawyer of William Davis for allegedly soliciting a prostitute


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