Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

  • From a legal standpoint, it can't be overstated what happened yesterday: Four Assistant U.S. Attorneys who prosecuted Roger Stone withdrew from of the case -- two of them quitting their jobs entirely -- in protest of Trump's interference in the sentencing phase of the trial. They had recommended a sentence of up to eight years which Trump objected to but their boss, William Barr, stepped in and ordered the sentence recommendation withdrawn. It's stunning for every angle.
  • And yesterday Trump denied "talking" to the Justice Department but said he would have had the "absolute right to do it."  And although the "talking" part is probably a lie, he doesn't need to "talk" to anyone when he sends his orders over Twitter by saying the sentencing recommendation is a "miscarriage of justice" that he "cannot allow." 
  • And then Trump sent this bizarre tweet last night attacking the judge who still has to sentence Stone. This would get any president impeached and removed in we weren't living in what is now Bizarro Land. (Side note: Judges don't put people in solitary confinement, and Hillary was never in front of the judge to be "treated" in any manner.)
  • I started keeping track of Class C tickets filed in JP Courts in Wise County last year and missed a big one in November: We had the speeding record set: 144 mph in a 70 mph zone. Haden paid a fine in December. (Cause no. JP1-C-244782.)
  • By the way, the greatest injustice in ticket writing went to a guy who received a citation (and not a warning) in May for going 42 in a 40 mph zone. That case was actually appealed to the County Criminal Court at Law #1, but it still shows he paid a fine. (Cause no. CR-19-00877-2).
  • And for those who don't know, you can look up county records here.
  • Big Money continues to go after Kay Granger with this flyer being mailed out. (Look, I don't care one way or another about Granger. I do care about the rich, via Super PACs, trying to buy elections.)
  • Legal stuff: I'm both horrified and incredibly impressed that a brief has just been filed in the Supreme Court United States that included the meme below. It's kind of explained here with a link to the brief. (If you read the whole thing, it actually is a great way of explaining a complicated legal concept, but it's probably not wise to do it at the Supreme Court. I might do it in a pleading in front of a trial judge who I knew very well, but I don't know if I'd even do it in the Fort Worth Court of Appeals. But this appeared in a "Friend of the Court" brief, so they don't have a lot to lose.) 
  • There's a child trafficking case making the headlines in the Messenger where a guy was stopped with a minor in the car -- a minor who had recently entered the country. All the cops know is the guy was being paid to give the kid a ride from California to Georgia, but the Sheriff specifically said they don't know why. Uh, that "why" is kind of the crux of the human trafficking statute
  • I want to talk to the guy who purchases this. I've got a lot of questions.
  • Loved this line from a concurring federal court appellate opinion released yesterday about municipal judges and justices of the peace throwing people in jail for not paying a fine without first determining whether they had the ability to pay. We don't have debtor's prisons (which an amazing number of judges in Texas still do not seem to understand.)
  • The Sophomore In The House asked me yesterday, "The kids at school are talking about 'Texas turning blue'. We were blue? I mean, did all of a sudden everyone's views change?"  And then she immediately followed that up with, "Did everyone's views in the South suddenly change and switch to Republican? When did that happen?"  Oh, my! Pull up a chair, darlin'!
  • A pro se Defendant in Wichita Falls is not making it easy on the court.
  • Shout out to an incredibly insightful and inquisitive reporter from the Star-Telegram yesterday who called me about a case that even NBC's Dateline has been in contact with me about. 
  • Messenger: Above the Fold.