A group of 10 attorneys Thursday petitioned for the removal of a Dallas judge who said he sentenced an 18-year-old murderer to only 30 years in prison because his two victims were homosexuals.

District Judge Jack Hampton is also under investigation by the Texas Commission on Judicial Conduct because of complaints filed by the Dallas Gay Alliance and the Texas Human Rights Foundation.The petition was filed with District Judge Ron Chapman, who is presiding judge of the 1st Administrative Judicial Region, which includes 35 counties in north Texas. Chapman automatically passes the petition on to the Texas Supreme Court, which has the power to remove a judge.

The petition will be held until Monday to allow other attorneys to read it and sign it if they desire, a court spokesman said.

Don Mason, one of the Dallas attorneys who signed the petition, said Hampton violated judicial conduct. "Clearly there has been a discredit thrown on the judiciary and its impartiality," he said.