It's Friday -- Let's Get Out of Here

Random Friday Morning Thoughts

Man, that was a random hot sports opinion I issued. And accurate. #SportsGenius

  • I'd suggest picking up a Messenger or subscribing online to read the recap of the Ronnie Brezina murder trial this week. The background of the victim communicating her fears to others before the deadly event is really wild. The trial continues next week. 

  • It looks like the most contested race in Wise County will be for County Clerk. So far, we have four: John Curry, Blanca Tuma, Raquie Gasperson and Walter Harvey.
    • The filing deadline for all elections is Monday at 6:00 p.m. 
  • Just east of the Decatur water tower located at 287 and 380, you might have seen tons and tons of dirt brought in for some kind of project. I finally learned what is going on: The construction of a new apartment complex.
  • News from overseas this morning on Wikileaks. I honestly haven't figured out how I feel about this guy.

  • Verdicts from yesterday:

    (The AP didn't include this collage with the news bulletin.)

  • I don't remember the Dallas DA's race being this close four years ago. They will go at it again in March:

  • That letter is s a "b"! Spoiler alert: "The Kindred/Anderson family does not expect to receive any money from the judgment, according lead attorney John Flood."

  • The Cartel murder of the attorney in broad daylight at the Southlake town square might be one of the craziest things that has ever happened. We need a documentary on it. There is at least now a Spanish version in the works: 

  • January 6th investigation notes:
    • The DC Appellate Court ruled yesterday that the National Archives must turn over documents from the Trump Administration regarding January 6th. The only remaining remedy for Trump is a Supreme Court appeal.  My prediction: They won't touch it.  

    • And Republican Liz Chaney, who is on the committee, is going full speed ahead:
    • For Trump and his cohorts to create an actual Power Point presentation outlining their illegal coup to overturn an American election took great hutzpah. It is right out of a scene from The Wire where Stringer Bell has to ask, "What are you doing?" followed by "Is you taking notes on a [effing] criminal conspiracy?"

  • Hot real estate opinion: I think one of the biggest lies during the recent real estate boom is the sentence "Homes placed on the market routinely get multiple offers for more than the asking price."  To be true, there would have to be an plethora of realtors not knowing the market value of homes. 
  • Not only do I not understand comparing the burning of the Fox News Christmas tree to Pearl Harbor, I don't understand any of this.

  • For criminal law practitioners only: The Fort Worth Court of Appeals gave the Fourth Amendment a rare win yesterday. Shoutout to defense lawyer Ray Napolitan on the win. 
  • Time which has passed since the Wise County Sheriff's Office has failed to solve the murder of Lauren Whitener in her home at Lake Bridgeport: 889 days.
  • MessengerAbove the Fold


Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

A Decatur couple had made it into the old "Cheers and Jeers" column in the Star-Telegram.   

  • I'm hearing we had a defense lawyer "aggressively" make a physical move towards a prosecutor on Monday during a hearing outside the presence of the jury in the Decatur murder trial being held this week in Jack County. I'll try to get the details. 
  • We got an unconstitutional Baby Jesus display in a Wise County government office! Someone get the ACLU on the horn! (The last time I did this, the office manager got very mad at me. Come on, we're having fun here, no?) Side note: Why is the Baby Jesus extra white?

  • This was a feel-good, and incredible, thread of pictures and video yesterday as a person was rescued from a car just feet from going over Niagara Falls. Unfortunately, she died over night.  

  • I think I like Finland politicians. 

  • When have a new arrestee in the Trump Insurrection. This time he is from Keller and not the brightest bulb in the room. 

  • The Sheriff in Clay County, who has been indicted for Official Oppression, held a nonsensical news conference where he tried to defend himself against the charges on why he held two people in jail after a JP had found no probable cause to hold them. 

    • I don't even have to say that he "allegedly" held two people after the finding of no probable cause because he actually admitted to doing it. (5:10) 
    • Instead he tried to throw the JP under the bus which made no sense to me. He claimed "the finding of no probable cause was irrelevant"  because he needed an actual order to release the couple. (8:35) That's a new one to me. A constitutionally required order finding probable cause is what gives him the authority to hold someone after a warrantless arrest. If there isn't a probable cause finding, he loses that authority. And that's what led to the indictment.
    • Legal nerdy stuff: He also seems to say that they tried to amend their affidavits to take another shot at establishing probable cause but the JP failed to rule on them.  Well, if he is of the position that he was waiting on a new probable cause determination (which I don't even think is allowed), art. 17.033(a) requires a person to be release when there has been the absence of a probable cause determination made within 24 hours. That law is in place (since 2001) to prevent a Sheriff from holding someone forever by saying, "Well, no judge has been in to make a probable cause decision, but I'm going to continue to hold the people because I don't have an order from a judge to release them."
    • But, once again, in this case there was a judge who reviewed the case within 24 hours and specifically made a no probable cause finding. But the two people were still held in jail. 
    • And anyone find it odd that the Sheriff used the official Clay County SO Facebook page and the actual sheriff's office, which is county property, for his personal defense?

  • This was a pic of Zeke before yesterday's practice, and I thought to myself that it looked like a simple, good, and probably inexpensive exercise bike. Nope. It's $1,750.

  • Thirty years ago today:

  • Hey, I mentioned the DFW advertising blitz of attorney Thomas J. Henry the other day. He's now made the front page of the San Antonio paper, and it doesn't look like it's in a good way. (Story is unfortunately behind a paywall.)


Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

Everyone was abuzz this week ten years ago about an "anti-gay ad" put out by then presidential candidate Rick Perry. I found it.   

  •  In the spirit of Christmas, a homeless man torched the Fox News Christmas Tree in Manhattan last night. 

  • With the deadline for local election filings quickly approaching, I would tell you exactly who was running for the Wise County races such as county commissioner, district clerk, county clerk, and county attorney if I was absolutely positive I had all the names. But since that information isn't available on the web, I can't. Incredible. 
  • There was a shooting in the "mall" in Killeen last night where one guy was hit "several times" but lived. The shooter is still on the run.  You would think it was a robbery based upon the photo, but it sounds like he just opened fire and left. A targeted hit? 

  • Here's a wild story that I was not familiar with. (And they do a deep dive into it with lots of links.)

  • COVID: My expert analysis for Texas data reveals that the decrease from the Summer Surge bottomed out on 11/20/21 and then the official Winter Surge began.  We cracked 3,000 in the hospital yesterday, but we are a long way from the 14,000 we reached in August.  I have no idea how high it will get. 
  • I seriously don't know what's going on here.

  • I guess we don't have to worry about Russia's 90,000 troops on the border of Ukraine after all. This is bizarre.

  • You've got to look for press coverage of the the Ghislaine Maxwell trial going on this week, and I find that a little surprising. This image was introduced into evidence a couple of days ago. 

  • Tell me you don't understand Texas civil law by telling me you've never heard of a General Denial.

  • Hey, just send me the document, Ok?

  • BYU fun fact: 

  • I've been told to read this book if you want to learn that FDR actually knew beforehand about the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. ("It alleges that Franklin Roosevelt and his administration deliberately provoked and allowed the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor to bring the United States into World War II. Stinnett argues that the attacking fleet was detected by radio and intelligence intercepts, but the information was deliberately withheld from Admiral Husband E. Kimmel, the commander of the Pacific Fleet at that time.")

  • Every bowl game, teams, date, time, location, TV info, and betting line:

  • Messenger: Above the Fold


Random Tuesday Morning Thoughts

I posted this front page ten years ago so today, out of curiosity, I looked up what happened to the 69 year old Waco Tax-Assessor Collector who had been arrested for misuse of funds. He had his trial the next year when he suddenly pled guilty and begged the jury to give him probation. They did.  But the judge hit him with a 180 days in jail as a condition of that probation. (It's a weird quirk in Texas law that allows a judge to incarcerate someone up to 180 days as a "condition" when the jury has already said they don't think the person needs to be locked up.)  

  • Correction: The guy that presumably shot and killed the Mesquite officer is alive and in the hospital. I don't know why I thought he was dead.
    • We still don't know much about what went down. So far all that has been released is Guy goes to meet Girlfriend in the parking lot and Guy's Wife follows him. Guy's Wife allegedly points gun at Girlfriend.  The officer shows up and was shot by the Guy. Guy gets shot but we really don't know how or by whom (the officer? the Wife? Self-inflicted?) 
  • There was no arrest. The government just seized her money.  How is this government theft legal? 

  • Good grief.
  • Random observation: I follow very random lawyers, even in other states. on Twitter who will tweet about their work just because I like seeing what they deal with. Is it a thing to study with someone on a silent zoom call in law school? Or any school?

  • The QAnon JFK nuts in Dallas showed up for the Dallas Christmas Parade over the weekend. And there were a bunch of 'em. Photos and video here.

  • Former Wise County District Clerk Lawana Snider died last week. She was a sweetheart. 
  • Why is Jacksboro's David Spiller campaigning way down in Lampasas?  Because they tricked up his district big time!
    If you were wondering, "Putters and Gutters" is a bowling alley and
    miniature golf course.
    Old District 68
    New District 68

    • Very nerdy random redistricting question: Does a district have to be one continuous geographic piece of land? Would the touching of county corners count? Shackleford and Eastland counties in district 68 seem to touch corners but, once I looked closer, it's not an actual true corner since they are offset by just a few miles where they share a border.
  • Someone help me out on this. If you read this story, it says the intensive program is for felony DWI offenders (people with two prior convictions). That's great. We've got a judge who is thinking outside the box instead of just agreeing to put people in cages.  But the guy who runs the program is a County Court at Law judge who has no felony jurisdiction. So I don't understand it.

  • It's kind of hard to tell when they are for Law and Order and when they are against it. Or maybe you can predict it. 

  • I don't know who that guy it, but he had the best view in the house.

  • Decatur hosts over 50 teams at a basketball tournament this weekend. That's a lot of buses. Below is just all of the varsity games. There's a JV schedule, too. 

  • In case you missed it, New England threw just three passes last night in the wind in Buffalo. And won.