The Campaign For DA


Random Friday Morning Thoughts


  • Texas Hospitalizations: +146. The wildfire continues. 

  • Just a reminder that the time I spent on the above bullet point about COVID is more time and effort than Trump has expended on the virus over the last week. 
  • Remember when I mentioned yesterday that, as for now, jury trials can resume in Texas state courts beginning on December 1st? The feds tried to get a jump on us and . . . 

  • Edit: Just like clockwork, Texas jury trials have just been postponed until at least February 1st.
  • Warning: The following bullet point was going to just be a quick hit and then I really got sucked into it. 
  • The Fort Worth Court of Appeals issued an opinion late yesterday arising out of a Class C offense that occurred in the Grandy's parking lot in Rhome after a traffic stop. It was an appeal from an actual jury trial in the Rhome municipal court. The charge? "Disregarding a police officer’s lawful order."  Oh, my. 
    • The facts are pretty wild for a Class C case.  This is what the female defendant got arrested for after being stopped for speeding. (Pickler is the name of the officer.)

    • If you wonder how a the equivalent of a traffic ticket ends up in the appellate court, I may have an answer: I think the defendant in the case is this lady

    • Those facts + "activist" = You knew where this case was headed.  Spoiler: Her conviction was affirmed. 
    • The Defendant's twitter feed is here and Facebook page is here. If I'm reading it right, she recently "stepped into the race" for the Texas GOP chair against Allen West. 
    • The appellate opinion says she recorded her encounter with the Rhome police officer on her cell phone. Someone find that video for me! She had to have posted it. 
    • Legal nerd alert: The case really has some really great legal issues.
      • Is that statute unconstitutionally vague? Answer: No. (I'm so so sure about that. What's a "lawful order", and how is the common man supposed to know what is and what is not a "lawful"? What about the order of "Stop talking and put your hand over your mouth!"? Is that a lawful order?)
      • Was the length of her detention in the Grandy's parking lot before the order was issued an illegal "prolonged detention" because the officer deviated from the purpose of the traffic stop by confronting the son? Answer: The court says "no" because the evidence (the video) is unclear as to what exactly the officer was doing when he confronted the son. (Very technical legal point: This could have turned into a disaster if the court had addressed this issue on a really crappy record. But this issue is legit and could have been addressed: What does talking to and patting the son down have to do with a stop which is based on speeding?) 
      • Is that statute of complying with "lawful orders" only applicable to orders associated with traffic offenses since the statute is located in the Transportation Code? Answer: No (but that's not a bad argument.)
    • Here's a quirk about the case: The appellate court ordered that no briefs be filed by either side before it issued it's order. Why? This has some really great and complicated issues. 
    • Another quirk: There were four lawyers involved in the appeal who didn't get to do much. 
    • Kind of a side note: Did the officer have a legal right to stop the passenger/son from going in Grandy's? I don't think so. It was his mom who who was lawfully detained for speeding, not him. Assuming it is an illegal detention of the son, does that fact effect the "lawfulness" of the officer's order telling the defendant to get back in the vehicle? Probably not, but that's a great question. Is it a "lawful order" to tell someone to step back when they are questioning the illegal detention and pat down of her son?
    • Heck, now I wished I had this case from the start. 
  • I need to check and see if North Dallas came back last night:

  • The next episode:

  • What happened in Texas a couple of years ago happened in Florida this month: A mystery candidate with a name similar to someone who is running gets placed on the ballot but makes no effort to campaign. And, due to the name confusion, the candidate ends up getting a handful of votes just by chance but it's enough to tip the election. In this case, it looks like a PAC who supported Garcia went and recruited some spare guy named Alex Rodriguez to get him on the ballot. It worked:

  • I know that exact same thing happened in Texas, but I can't find a link even though I know I wrote about it when it happened. But that's a tough Google search if you don't know names or counties. I couldn't locate it. 
  • This was just got posted and I can't vouch for it, but if it is true wouldn't that make the third rapper murdered in Dallas in like a month? There was a wild one earlier this week where a guy was murdered on I-35.

  • Time that has passed since the Wise County Sheriff's Office has failed to solve the murder of Lauren Whitener at Lake Bridgeport: 1 year, 4 months, 8 days.
  • Messenger: Above the Fold (Includes a story on the first Wise County teacher to pass away due to COVID-19.)