He gets two life sentences for Aggravated Kidnapping out of Denton County even though the victim died during trial and wasn't able to testify. No problem. The State admitted the victim's deposition testimony (and depositions are odd in criminal cases and are rarely allowed, but the judge let it happen in this case because the victim was gravely ill.)
Oops. The State took the deposition even though the Defendant couldn't be present because the Feds had scooped him up from the Denton County Jail in the middle of the night. (Federal government is out of control.)
That's a problem so says the Fort Worth Court of Appeals in an opinion released this morning. (PDF file). That little "Confrontation Clause" means he should have been allowed to be at the deposition. Convictions reversed.
Note: He had a ton of prior convictions according to this background story and at least one of them was from Wise County.
(The guy might not be lucky at all. I have no idea if the Feds pursued charges and I have no idea if there is sufficient evidence to retry him.)
at 9:43 AM
- It is six days to the start of college football season, so I'll start a countdown of the cheerleaders of the greatest sport in the history of ever. Today: TCU.
- On Fox 4 this morning, while covering the DWI story about changing the law to allow "deferred adjudication", anchor Lauren Przybyl referred to it as "deferred ajudification."
- The Star Telegram has a story about a proposal to turn the Trinity River into a tubing friendly like the river in New Braunfels. One word: Nasty.
- I hope I'm qualified to give volleyball tips because I've been doing it a lot of it during my evening hours.
- There are a bunch of miners trapped in Chile and it may take four months to get them out. Rescue workers snaked a camera down to them yesterday and released grainy video footage. Wow.
- Ranger fans: What the heck has happened to Cliff Lee?
- Another Wise County Pee Wee football rant by a transplant.
- Back to the cheerleader theme: UTA?
- Funny line about Bristol Palin being on Dancing With The Stars: "What star will she be paired with?"
- We're coming up on the five year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. I went and looked back about what I thought about it as it was approaching and it turns out I was spot on. (Complete with satellite image.) That's why I'm the most trusted name in weather.
- Collateral thought: I've been running this blog for five years?
- I think the City of Denton has a new book-in camera. Clarity has improved.
at 10:49 AM
- There was a story last night where a respected prosecutor of DWI cases in Tarrant County was recommending that "deferred adjudication" become available for first time offenders. But as much as I appreciated that, I couldn't get past the local newscaster saying currently first time DWI defendants "just get jail time." Any one want to do a smidgen of research on that?
- Saw former Cowboy Robert Newhouse on the news last night recovering from a stroke. Felt bad for him.
- Two things that drive me nuts: The annual "fried food" entries at the Texas State Fair and the national "air guitar" championships. Idiocracy.
- Hot girl jumps around during Colts pre-season came. You're welcome.
- "Man In Short Shorts And Halter top Terrorizing Dallas Airport." You're welcome, again.
- And we saw the obligatory story on the local news last night about some kid who won't cut his hair for school. Get the scissors.
- A Newsweek column last week pointed out, with the barrage of constant text messaging and Internet access, we are no longer ever "bored."
- How do I get one of those "International Intelligence Agent" badges that the guy had who was arrested in Denton yesterday?
- Football fans: Look at these career NFL records for field goal percentage. Wow, kickers used to be bad. (And you can spend hours at profootballreference.com)
- The City of Decatur has a multi-page ordinance regulating business signs, but every month it seems like the City Council grants a variance. The newest one is to Wendy's.
- I've somehow won the position of making sure the household wakes up. I don't want that pressure. Edit: Well, I wake her up and then she wakes the kids up.
- The NFL is getting close to an 18 game regular season with two preseason games. The players' union needs to get their act together.
at 10:36 PM
What a tough judge!!!! He really gave it to that guy!!!
Nope. It was a capital murder case where the State did not seek the death penalty. Once convicted, it was an "automatic" life sentence. I guess the sentence was "handed down . . . after hearing statements from the victim's family" but he didn't have a choice.
at 7:11 PM
- I'm not sure what I think about it: Channel 8 went after Southlake's new quarterback last night. They made it a lengthy lead story with the the issue being whether his family has technically moved to the town from Oklahoma. (I'm guessing the highlight was his dad being tracked down gassing up his boat in Oklahoma and throwing a bag of ice at a cameraman.)
- And Southlake's athletic director reminded me of the nervous Martin Short skit from SNL when he was portrayed being interviewed by 60 Minutes. (I just looked that up and that's a 1984 reference. Good grief.)
- Speaking of Short, his wife just died.
- Fox 4 Frenzy: They went bonkers at 5 and 6 about a "kidnapped" child from a Dallas elementary school. The story didn't make sense at all. At 10, they announced the child wasn't kidnapped at all -- just the victim of mistaken identity.
- A marijuana case was tried in the County Court at Law in Decatur yesterday. Looked like the issue was whether the defendant actually lived in the house where the Devil's Lettuce was found.
- That's four trials in the CCL in the last two weeks. I think the breakdown is two guilty verdicts, one acquittal and one directed verdict for the defendant (by a visiting judge.)
- Enrollment at Chico ISD this fall is down almost 10%. Wow.
- Texas Rangers' financial statement released yesterday: They spend $234,000 a year on baseballs.
- Beating: Waking up in the middle of the night, hearing wonderful rain, then hearing howling dog in the backyard caught in it. That caused me to stumble out of bed and pick the wet mutt up and put him temporarily in the garage.
- While waiting on the school bus yesterday, some people looked at me like Chris Hansen on Dateline.
- While you slept: At least 46 killed in Iraq as bombs explode all over the country. (Flashback to "Mission Accomplished" photo.)
- It's amazing that the skydiver who got caught on a Ranger Stadium light pole last night didn't get hurt.
- John McCain won the GOP nomination for Senator last night in Arizona. Same verse, same as the first. No wonder "hope and change" sounds so good.
Nothing like running for mayor and using all your precious TV time to serenade the Fox Providences version of Fiona with a Christian song. He's fearless! Maybe a little nutty, but fearless! That's some change we can believe in!
Side notes: (1) is it a condition of the employment of all Fox affiliates that the female be hot? and (2) how'd she not bust out laughing.
at 1:12 PM
Edit: Ooops. This got posted below. My bad.
- Denton County book-in "Hey, now." (Thanks, emailer.)
- Mike Tyson's abandoned mansion. Wow.
- The most violent crash video you've ever seen. (Driver is allegedly still alive, and this happened yesterday). Warning: Disturbing.
- Miss Mexico won the Miss Universe pageant last night. We'd allow her to illegally immigrate, wouldn't we?
- First day of school was hectic but smoothly execute. I don't know how a single parent does it.
- Fall movie preview from the Dallas Morning News.
- I waited on a school bus this morning. I had never done that before.
- The Rangers almost threw a multi-pitcher no-hitter last night. That was kind of fun.
- Caught Mark Cuban on Entourage from Sunday night. He's a heck of a lot bigger than I thought. (But he explains it by saying you always see him standing next to seven footers.)
- The heat was a beating yesterday -- I'm not sure I remember that much heat combined with no wind.
- I've been up since 4:50 a.m., yet I'm still scrambling.
I'll admit, I'm normally tough on cops, but this is enough to make me want up to Massachusetts and defend this guy.
at 9:37 AM
- 106? It's going to be 106 today?
- It's the first day of school. Normally, I wouldn't have known. Boy, do I know it this year.
- My favorite radio station reflected upon school years this morning: "It was like going to prison."
- Texas high school preseason football brawl.
- Rick Springfield is 61 today. Not sure of the age of Jessie's girl. (Rimshot)
- There's an egg recall going on. I don't eat eggs. Ever.
- We had our fantasy football draft on Friday evening -- with our own Vanna White. (There was a run on quarterbacks and I ended up with Jay Cutler. I'm in trouble.)
- I've got a game room that was pretty much vacant for the last five years. No longer. As of this weekend, it's been resurrected: Furniture, new carpet, paint, TV.
- Picked the Family Unit up at Love Field on Saturday night. I love Love Field.
- Sean Hannity had his spare "Freedom Concert" this weekend in Dallas and put on a cowboy hat to patronize those dumb enough to support him.
- That Heidi Montag gal in a bikini. Hey, now.
- A 25 year old was death was listed in the Update this morning. I wonder what happened.
- The parents of the Southlake "teen punished with babysitting" case were on the news over the weekend. That dad was weird. Very weird.
- At this time last year, the Rangers had the very same record.
at 8:33 AM
- When my long time belt wouldn't fasten earlier this year, I panicked.
- I jog three or four times a week for at least 30 minutes but I had begun to cheat. Whataburger on Sunday? Yep. Bags of low fat Doritos? Yep.
- I'm a Nutrisystem fan so I went back to it.
- The meals are small. Way too small. So I complimented every one with a salad, tomatoes, and fat free dressing. If I didn't do that, I'd die.
- But look at that chart. Each bar represents one day and it covers three or four months. I weighed every day and immediately documented it. If you look closely, there are times where 10 days apart I handn't lost a pound. Look closely. That was incredibly disheartening. But just stay the course and it happens.
- The chart track March through June. Have I kept it off? Yep. Health Choice TV dinners are my staple.
at 12:51 PM