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

Random Friday Morning Thoughts

A child was mauled, but survived, in Lake Worth by a dog. The next day, while news reporters were on the scene, a brawl almost broke out between neighbors. Fox 4's Lari Barager was seen  getting out of the way in this pretty funny screenshot. Unfortunately, the video has now been lost to the ages. In looking for an update about the mauling, I found out the owners of the dog were actually arrested and were sentenced to probation. 

  • I don't have to tell you it's icy out there, but it's a million times worse than it was yesterday morning. Here's a great pic of downtown Dallas from early this morning showing just that:

  • Wise County will hit 33 degrees today in the late afternoon.  But you will see melting on the roads even when the temperature is in the upper 20s so long as there is direct sun.  The clouds should move out before noon. 
  • “We are dealing with one of the most significant icing events that we’ve had in the state of Texas in at least several decades.” - Gov. Abbott yesterday lying about the severity of the winter storm in order to take credit for the power simply staying on. 

  • I kept seeing "Jen Myers", a meteorologist with Oncor, popping up on my TV screen. She looked familiar, but I didn't realize it was the same gal who used to be with Fox 4. She's just changed her hair when she changed jobs. 

  • I'm concerned about this girl. There have been a lot of abductions by UNT of young ladies over the years, and there's at least a couple of them which have never been solved.   I think this is her Twitter account which links to this photo gallery. If so, she's a UNT soccer player. 

  • Financial quick hits from yesterday: 
    • Facebook dropped 85 points (26%) causing overreaction everywhere. But it will be fine. It's had big drops before in the last five years. 

    • Oh, my. 

    • Amazon Prime is getting kind of pricey. (Honestly, I thought I was paying about $80 a year, but they snuck a price change in there a couple of years ago I completely missed.)

  • There was the "light pillar" phenomenon in Amarillo late yesterday afternoon. 

  • Wise  County's Congressional Rep. Ronny Jackson is taking credit for something he voted against. Link. And the Wichita Falls paper needs to call him on it instead of regurgitating his press releases. 

  • The Lottery-Winner-Paid-Lawyer-$450,000 case out of Wichita Falls was finally appealed again. His petition asking the court to review the case was due on 1/26/22 after the court had granted an extension to file it. He barely made it. Here it is if interested

    • I've railed a great deal about this case, but it really is amazing. Boiled down to its core, the lawyer thought she could win on appeal by simply doing absolutely nothing at trial and later claim he was denied his Sixth Amendment right to an effective defense. Her client got a life sentence. The appellate court in Fort Worth said the conviction would stand because the client went along with his lawyer's plan.  But can he really agree to it? He's sitting by an attorney who has been paid almost a half million dollars, and he's supposed to not trust her that she's right? Now, barring a miracle, he'll spend the rest of his life in prison, and he never put on whatever defense he had.
  • Callback to yesterday's post about a judge who wouldn't let a lawyer take of his mask for oral arguments before the appellate court:  A complaint has been filed. Good. Nothing will become of it, but good.  

  • Most legal nerdy thing I even posted which will interest no one: If you want to see a pro se litigant actually convince the Texas Supreme Court to hear his appeal even after they denied it, look at his pleadings in this case.  (Edit: Link fixed. And I forgot to mention it is out of Palo Pinto.) Call me crazy, but I think they are fantastically written, and his unorthodox use of graphics is golden. 

  • 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: 945 days.
  • Messenger: Above the Fold


Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

Despite the weather, it's UIL Realignment Day. Decatur and Bridgeport were in the same district a decade ago.

  • Weather notes:
    • We have officially entered into the Ted Cruz Cancun Watch Mode. 

    • Highway 287 was completely shut down in Alvord around 8:30 last night due to the ice and wrecks. 

    • The Lake Bridgeport/Twin Hills area lost power around 9:00 p.m. which was not restored until after 4:00 a.m.  Over 500 homes were left in the dark and cold. 
    • The precipitation was/is pretty much like we expected with the exception that the roads aren't as slick as you would expect -- despite what they look like. Here's downtown Bridgeport early this morning: 
      Photo by Police Chief Steve Stanford (who is competing
      with me as the Hardest Working Man in Show Business.)

    • Looking at the traffic cams in DFW this morning on the news, there aren't many vehicles on the road, but those who are seem to be moving at a pretty good clip. But there are exceptions: 

    • When I was a kid, we had to listen to the radio and watch for the TV scroll to see if school was cancelled. It was the closest we ever came to feeling the level of angst that a college football player experiences as he waits to see if his name would be called out at the NFL draft. 
  • Breaking: Looks like we killed an Big Evil Doer overnight.  There had been a $10 million reward offered for the whereabouts of the guy. 

    • But the AP earlier reported that we killed some Non Evil Doers in the attack.  We also had to blow up one of our own helicopters which had become inoperable. 

  • A former Tarrant County Justice of the Peace was convicted yesterday of lying to get a homestead tax exemption. Guess which part of the sentence makes me roll my eyes; "In Criminal District Court 3, visiting Judge Daryl Coffey sentenced Wright to four years of probation, 10 days in jail and a $2,500 fine [and] also ordered that she write in the next 90 days a 50-page essay apologizing for her behavior."  Side note: Fifty!? I'd roll my eyes if it were five. 

  • The man who fixes stuff for the Cowboy is retiring. He came in with Jimmy Johnson from the University of Miami and has been here ever since. And he knows where all the bodies are buried. 

  • Help a defeated President stage a coup and America will reward you with an appearance on a silly prime time show on Fox 

  • That's a lot of prosecutors, but you can never let a perceived crime crisis go to waste:

  • Legal nerd stuff just to show just how insufferable the Fifth Circuit federal appellate court is. (Source for what follows.)
    • A lawyer scheduled for oral argument asked to present it remotely due to COVID concerns. He filed a formal motion to do so.

    • The Court said no. Ok, admittedly that's not too bad and could probably be expected.
    • But when the lawyer appears to do the oral arguments and walks up to the podium, this exchanged took place. You can listen to it here

  • It's just a matter of time before these things and drones are everywhere watching everything. (This article about their use on the border is from the Department of Homeland Security website.)

  • This (embarrassing) video put out last week by LSU of its new coach dancing with a potential recruit took quite the turn yesterday when the player signed with Alabama instead of LSU.

  • During UT's crazy basketball visit to Lubbock this week, I learned that the "Lubbock Gorilla Lawyer" was a big player in Tech promotions.  Good lord. 

  • I bet you had no idea the Olympics had started or that the U.S. Women's Hockey Team was playing as I post this.


Random Wednesday Morning Thoughts

Romney won Florida this week and the Republican nomination was sealed.  Things happen
 fast in the first two months of an election year.

  • Plummeting (seven day average): 
    Correction: I screwed up my "modified" chart on Monday by
    superimposing a single day total on a seven day average graph.

  • Weather: My award winning weather prediction from yesterday still stands with one exception: The start of the drop in temperatures was delayed by about two hours.  We will now hit freezing at around 6:30 to 7:00 p.m. today which means we wont see the freezing rain start until after that. Snow won't begin until around 5:00 a.m. but will still taper off at noon. The net result is that this will be a slightly larger ice event than expected. I'm lowering the snow predictions to 1.8 inches. All of Wise County is going to be shut down. 
    • School districts were announcing yesterday that they would be closed for Thursday and/or Friday, including Lancaster, Dallas and Garland.  I can't remember school cancellations happening two days in advance of a winter storm. 
    • Delkus' projections as of this morning:

  • It's Ground Hog Day.  To be honest, I'm not sure I knew about the time that a mayor literally killed a ground hog by dropping him. Yep, he died a few days later. Story and video.

  • The (under indictment) Clay County sheriff is doing a Valentine's Day bit.

  • Tarrant County DA candidate Matt Krause, who has never tried a criminal case before a jury, has released a TV commercial. It is just as bad as his experience, and it has an extreme car salesman feel to it.

  • You've got to spend a second to figure out how it works, but this is a great website of searchable campaign contributions for candidates in Texas, and it is up to date. Here's a screenshot for a search of Rep. David Spiller (R-Jacksboro).

  • The West Texas oilmen who used to run the Empower Texans PAC, Farris Wilks and Tim Dunn, have money to burn. They have given governor candidate Don Huffines, who stands no chance, $1 million.  They are now funneling the money through a PAC called "Defend Texas Liberty" which they have donated $4.3 million to since January 1st.  That PAC has given $50,000 to Texas House candidate Shelly Luther. 

  • If you seen the billboard in Decatur for little known governor candidate Kandy Horn, you aren't the only one.  

  • Today's Messenger pays a lot of attention to a recent Rhome City Council meeting where at least one audience member was thrown out. I haven't watched it, but the whole video is here. (Thanks emailer.)

  • The Washington Football team, moments ago, announced their new name, but yesterday a television helicopter with a fantastic zoom lens was able to peer in a window at FedEx Field to spoil the announcement.   Video.

  • Kinda legal nerdy stuff: There was a major legal error yesterday in the pleading of Brian Flores, the fired Dolphins coach who has sued the NFL for discrimination

  • Criminal justice guru Grits for Breakfast is spot on with this observation:

  • I'm really surprised Texas or Florida hasn't passed a law to ban Black History Month. Seriously. 
  • Messenger: Above the Fold