In what is seemingly becoming a new Harris County District Attorney's Office tradition, yet another Felony District Court Chief turned in his resignation this Friday.
Chief of the 178th District Court, Lester Blizzard, turned in his two week notice this afternoon. On a sidenote, neither Pat Lykos nor Jim Leitner could be found on the 6th Floor to accept the resignation, so Lester turned it over to the administrative assistant in charge of timesheets. I don't know where Leitner was, but it must have been Lykos' nap time.
For those of you who don't know Lester Blizzard, he had been a Division Chief in Major Fraud/White Collar Crime prior to Lykos and the Gang Who Couldn't Shoot Straight pulled into town. In addition to taking on massive and complicated cases involving specialized knowledge and a tremendous amount of patience to prosecute, Lester was also in charge of taking on dirty lawyers that practiced law without a license. He has a very analytical mind and a very effective way of presenting complicated cases to juries. His success record as a prosecutor on these types of cases was extremely impressive.
But Lester wasn't only talented at trying the "paper" cases. He also did quite well in trying violent cases. He sat second chair with Kelly Siegler on the infamous "Wig Shop" murder, successfully prosecuting Dror Goldberg for the Bellaire thrill kill. He also was the lead prosecutor on the case of Beau Maloney, who was murdered an innocent woman at random in the Rice Village area (as part of a larger string of random and unprovoked violent crimes).
Lester's specialized knowledge in white collar cases made him the natural choice when promoted to head the White Collar Division of Special Crimes. Quite frankly, it was a match made in Heaven. Lester had prosecuted massive insurance fraud cases and had even testified before Congress on the topic. The D.A.'s Office was quite fortunate to have a prosecutor with that type of background.
In an era where White Collar Crime is becoming the most lucrative areas of practice for criminal defense, Lester remained a public servant and stayed true to remaining on the prosecution side of it.
Unfortunately, and extremely stupidly, when Lykos and the Gang took over, they (in their infinite wisdom) chose to demote Lester from his position in White Collar Crimes and move him back to the Trial Bureau as a District Court Chief. In all of the stupid things that they did (and Lord knows there are a lot to choose from), moving Lester out of that position was probably the dumbest. By analogy, it would be like a new coach taking over the San Francisco 49ers in the late 1980s and deciding to move Joe Montana to linebacker.
Lester tried to make the best of the situation, and for the past five months he has continued to serve as the Chief of the 178th District Court.
But apparently, he finally grew fed up with the incompetence of the Lykos Administration, and turned in his resignation today.
Now, common sense would dictate that an attorney with Lester's talent and experience would most likely be headed to a big firm where he could draw a tremendous salary doing White Collar defense, right?
Lester is actually taking a 40% pay cut and heading to the Galveston County District Attorney's Office. He'll be making a lengthy commute for less money, but at the end of the day, he will continue to be a Public Servant.
Harris County's loss is Galveston's gain. And once again, we have Pat Lykos and the Gang to thank for it.