Thursday, December 15, 2011

Motion to Compel

Interesting developments today from the 185th District Court Grand Jury as Assistant District Attorney and Deputy Division Chief of Misdemeanor Rachel Palmer was escorted from the Grand Jury to the 185th District Court in response to a Motion to Compel Testimony.

Special Prosecutors Jim Mount and Stephen St. Martin approached the bench with Palmer's defense attorney Clay Rawlins for a hearing on the record where Mount and St. Martin filed a Motion to Compel Testimony from Palmer. Per the conversation at the bench, Palmer invoked her Fifth Amendment right against Self-Incrimination in front of the Grand Jury. The Special Prosecutors' position was that she did not have a right to invoke the 5th, since she was not the target of the investigation and no questions would be asked that would incriminate her.

Rawlins had apparently contacted the Special Prosecutors yesterday after Palmer was subpoenaed to testify this morning. Rawlins informed them that Palmer would be taking a "blanket Fifth," meaning she would state her name for the record and then invoke the Fifth on all following questions. In response to Rawlins' representation to them, the prosecutors drafted a Motion to Compel.

All parties were ordered to return for a hearing on the Motion to Compel at 1:00 pm this afternoon.

Keeping in mind that a Harris County Assistant District Attorney invoking her Fifth Amendment right just looks terrible, it begs the question: who is the target of the investigation that she is trying to protect?

I will keep you posted as events develop.

106 comments:

Anonymous said...

WOW!

Like lambs to the slaughter...

Anonymous said...

Nice, Channel 11 already showed this at noon news and indicated they will cover this afternoons events, I'm sure they'll have a report on the news tonight.

Anonymous said...

A Harris County Assistant District Attorney takes the Fifth before a Grand Jury?

Have we become Chicago, or Moscow?

The breadth and depth of institutional corruption in the HCDAO that this implies is scary.

Anonymous said...

Like the cigarette smoke in the CJC garage, the plot is beginning to thicken...How fun is this!!?

Anonymous said...

Why does it look terrible? Even though they attempt to deprive people of their rights on a daily basis, ADAs are entitled to the protections of the Constitution, too.

Rage

Anonymous said...

Just grant Rachel use immunity and hold her in contempt if she refuses to answer. More campaign fodder being made right in front of the news camera.

PS: I sure hope Rachel dressed well today. Ya know, you gotta look good!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 12:18: Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is as good as useless in Moscow.

Anonymous said...

Rage, I think the issue is you only get the 5th amendment protection to protect yourself, not other people. Rachel can't invoke it to protect Pat. That is the same as any other....
And as a lawyer, she should know that.

Anonymous said...

Rage, I think the issue is you only get the 5th amendment protection to protect yourself, not other people. Rachel can't invoke it to protect Pat.

Duh.

I'm assuming she has something to hide.

Rage

Anonymous said...

As a lawyer, Rachel should have known lie detector tests weren't admissible in court - but she didn't, ...but she is dressed well today and that's important

Anonymous said...

Are these 2 grand juries still meeting in the regular grand jury rooms, or have they moved to a more secure location? I would be concerned about Patsy and crew planting bugs in the room.

Anonymous said...

Not having a dog in this hunt, I believe that the Prosecutors know what they are doing and what is taking place, and refuse to let the select few and others blow a smoke screen to deceive the voting public.

Anonymous said...

Rachel! The pubic is simply overwhelmed by your husband's class.

It speaks volumes about you and your your boss. Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:51 YOU definitely have a dog in the hunt.

Anonymous said...

Old Dog

To non lawyer readers you may be doing the "limbo" to stay open minded by repeating the Mantra: What does this have to do with the elected DA Ms. LYKOS.

You see Ms. Palmer was VERY active in PL campaign and PL was VERY openly supportive of Ms. Palmer when she ran for judge but lost to 11th hour well qualified Judge DON ANYTHING in the R primary.
Management wise Ms. Palmer has been given favorable standing over others who have long since left or fired by PL.

PL publically and coyily says she has no idea what these G.J.s are investigating. REALLY?

Holmes nor Vance politicized this office and shunned publicity - instead trusting the line working stiff prosecutors to talk freely to the press...but....at their own risk.

PL wants it both ways: "The Give me the limelight" on basically puff lightweight media matters. Have big splash press conferences on the creation of this or that good sounding (human trafficking) or (cold case) divisions. But if they go flat or ANY BAD LIGHT BEGINS TO COME HER WAY..like the GHOST matters she acts cowardly. Claims ignorance.

Why doesn't she hold a press conference professing complete cooperation with any G.J. investigation of HER OFFICE and show some simblence of projecting true leadership? Nope. "The I have no idea what's going on with all this negative stuff, but let me tell you about our new internal affairs division.

VOTERS - an ADA taking the 5th while the Office is being investigated is ALSO STUNNINGLY UNPRECEDENTED IN MY 35 years as a Holmes prosecutor and lawyer!

Ashamed said...

This just looks bad. I feel horrible for our office. This is not good - regardless of what went on.

Isn't the cover-up always worse than the offense?

I cannot beleive this is happening. This is bad.

Anonymous said...

Rage,
In regards to Palmer taking the 5th, you first say:
"Why does it look terrible?"
and then follow it up with:
"I'm assuming she has something to hide."

Didn't you just answer your own question?

Anonymous said...

Old dog whipping Smart computer that unilaterally inserts non-relevant woes in post.


The judge I spoke of in my last post should have read: Don S M Y T H .

Old Dog

Anonymous said...

Don Hooper's name dujour is "Dinkit". Somehow that name seems appropriate doesn't it? What would Freud say.

Anonymous said...

She'd be a fool not to take the 5th whether she's guilty or not. As a prosecutor - she probably knows that the grand jury process is captive to the DAs and you never know what's coming - especially considering the current political climate etc.

Anonymous said...

Incredible. The following was taken from Big Jolly's blog. Addressed to Mr. Hooper.

Don,
if you are gonna pick a fight, lets talk about how you waived Rachel Palmer's badge at two different parties to threaten to arrest the folks there if they didn't leave. Let's talk about how Pat Lykos still hasn't prosecuted you for impersonating a police official, because it might threaten Rachel Palmer's job at the DA's office.
Or let's talk about how Rachel Palmer is Pat Lykos's pet and therefore you are clearly biased in protecting your better half's future job.
Or lets talk about how you claim to be a CEO of a fake corporation.
Or let's talk about your messy divorce and child custody battle.
Or.. Or.. Or..
Quit picking on Leif and lay off Anderson. I'll argue on Anderson's behalf that he can be AGAINST abortion but still have to follow the letter of the LAW in granting a Judicial Bypass in rare and life-threatening circumstances (like the mother's father is also the child's father in an abuse case).
Go back to your "consulting" job.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the South Texas College of Law should re-examine their legal ethics classes. Several of their grads seemed to be in need of remedial work.

Anonymous said...

Ashamed 3:18:

You can't believe this is happening? It's bad for the office?

You are obviously a brand new employee who has no clue what kind of organization (and I use the term loosely)this is. What's happening in the open is what has been happening behind closed doors for the last three years. Yes, it is bad but it was inevitable given Lykos trying to do a job she knows nothing about whatsoever. Couple that with her evil and egocentric intentions and you have a recipe for disaster.

Anonymous said...

What happened at the 1:00 hearing? I am dying to know.

Anonymous said...

an ADA taking the 5th while the Office is being investigated is ALSO STUNNINGLY UNPRECEDENTED IN MY 35 years as a Holmes prosecutor

Just because a grand jury never investigated the office back then doesn't mean there was nothing to investigate. It could certainly be indicative of a system so stacked in favor of the state that no investigation would take place.

Didn't you just answer your own question?

No. As a civil libertarian, I see no problem with people taking the 5th. As a prosecutor who works to strip peoples' rights away, you, I'm sure, do.

I was answering someone else's question, who indicated that I thought Palmer could take the 5th for Lykos or a third person. I never said that, and don't believe that.

Rage

Normal Rate of Attrition said...

AWESOME!!!

My fellow DAs, please Google proxy servers.

Anonymous said...

Ms. Palmer,

Save yourself and turn state's evidence against the state. The first one to turn is the first one to get the deal.

Just think about it while you are tossing and turning in bed tonight. Lykos is going to throw you under the bus regardless of what she tells you behind the famous den door.

Take the advice of your true friends and save yourself continued ridicule. Be the whistleblower. A book deal will follow.

Anonymous said...

Old Dog to Rage:

I respect your Libitarian views and personally think the two party system at present is flawed. Locally Both D. And R. Leaders are political lackies .... especially Woodville.

However, you stick to "civil" law and I will stick to WHAT IS....NOT WHAT COULD'VE or SHOULD'VE happened in the D.A.'s Office for 30 years BEFORE this present UNPRECEDENTED event is happening.

No one had to cover for Holmes or Vance.........they honorably carried their own water.

One thing is for sure...Now Palmer HAS to be fired....and she will - the Lykos way - by resignation: "Just sign right here deary and everything will be just fine...".

Anon 3:18 said...

Rage,
You asked why it "looked" terrible and then said it appears that she had something to hide. Your original comment didn't say anything about whether or not you had a problem with it. Of course she had a right to take the 5th, Murray simply said that it "looked" bad and your response explained why it "looked" bad.

Moreover, my comment had nothing in it to suggest I was a prosecutor. But, if let's look closely at your unneccesary attack. "As a prosecutor who works to strip peoples' rights away, you, I'm sure, do." Palmer is a prosecutor, so by your logic isn't she being hypocritical? And thus doesn't that make her look even worse?

Strangely, people can disagree with you even if they aren't DAs (which I am not)

Mark W. Stephens said...

The question is, why would an ADA plead the 5th, knowing she was not the target of the investigation? And certainly knowing she can be compelled to testify as a witness?

Only two reasons I can think of.

1. Delay tactic

2. CYA. She doesn't want to look like a snitch or give up the real target, so she'll make them compell her to testify.

Either way, the perception is the DAs office has something to hide.

Politically speaking, this could be the nail in the coffin for Lykos campaign.

The whole situation has had very minimal media coverage thus far, and of course the Chronicle has been supporting Lykos, but all that is about to change.

Lykos' days as DA are numbered. Just my opinion.

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:43-
The hearing was continued until Monday for Special Prosecutors to furnish a list of questions to be propounded to the witness, Rachel Palmer. The truly entertaining part of the news video was Jim Leitner trying to answer a reporter's questions and keep his eyes open. Poor Jim, still trying to convince everyone this is a conspiracy against Pat and that the media just wants this to "look bad". Newsflash: Jim, it's not a conspiracy against Pat. This is happening because of what Pat has done. Further, it looks bad because it IS bad. You might consider getting some new business cards printed up. You're about to become a defense lawyer again.

Anonymous said...

I am surprised that the meeting with all of the big players yesterday has not been brought up yet. Everyone except PL of course. Wahat exactly was going on in that conference room with Palmer, Jordan, Leitner and a few others?? Maybe getting all of the lies straight before going in again????

Anonymous said...

Dum de dum dum Jimbo's gonna go.
I am soooo excited to see that pathetic little weasle get what he deserves: a swift kick in his ass, a pink slip and the respect he deserves----nada nada enchilada.
Time to PARTEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Someone asked earlier if Don Hooper is helping or hurting Rachel. Isiah Carey's post clearly shows that Hooper is hurting her

Anonymous said...

I wonder if all this is going to affect my getting a job (an actual paying job) somewhere else.

Intern

Anonymous said...

re: anon 3:35 pm
[Don Hooper's name dujour is "Dinkit". Somehow that name seems appropriate doesn't it? What would Freud say.]

Freud would say that 'Dinkit' is Sanskrit for Little Penis.

Anonymous said...

No one had to cover for Holmes or Vance.........they honorably carried their own water.

Sure. So did Rosenthal, Sebesta, and John Bradley. They never prosecuted an innocent man, either...

Moreover, my comment had nothing in it to suggest I was a prosecutor. But, if let's look closely at your unneccesary attack.

You're right, and I am sorry. I promise to never call you a prosecutor again. That was low.

Mark Stephens, you forgot:

3. To get immunity in exchange for testifying.

Rage

Anonymous said...

I don't know Don Hooper--aka Little Dink, aka dinkit, or whatever little phallic handle he fancies, but other than the fact that he is married to Rachel Palmer, he--as some sort of "consultant"--has NO qualifications to express an intelligent opinion about the Grand Jury investigations of Pat Lykos and he certainly has no objective insight as to what is going on in the Harris County DA's Office. What Little Dink doesn't know is that Pat Lykos and her "Leadership Team" has absoluely devistated the Office. While there are some solid survivors still there suffering on life support, Pat Lykos fired or ran off dozens of good prosecutors. Pat Lykos--who has never tried a case--has replaced formerly qualified leadership with political pawns like Hana Chow AND Rachel Palmer. That Office is a mere shadow of its former self. And no matter how hard Little Dink tries to get up rhetoric about how what's happening to his Hush-hush Honey is because of Judge Brown (a good and respected jurist) or because of Mike Anderson (a true public servant and a hell of a trial lawyer), Little Dink's efforts go limp when faced with the reality of what's wrong: Pat Lykos! I don't know if the Chronicle or Little Dink's soft friends like Harris County RC Jarred Woodfil will ever realize the damage Lykos has done. They probably will not. But hopefully the voters will look past the ugliness of Little Dink's envious and mean comments, his 5th Amendment Honey (who is NOT a victim of anything besides her own bad choices and misplaced loyaty to Pat), and the failed leadership of the Harris County RC Chair and vote for a change. Whether it be Mike Anderson or Dem candidate Zach Fertitta, the HCDAO has to have change. Lykos must go. That's the solid truth and hard fact of the matter.

Anonymous said...

Dear Rachel Palmer, you better darn sure hope that "God is good" enough to protect political hacks like you, John Jordan, Roger, Hanna, and Lance. Then again, I don't think God cares a whole lot about people who have made a living for the past few years wrecking careers and who don't have the courage to talk to a Grand Jury--especially if they have nothing to hide!!

Anonymous said...

I still support Judge Pat Lykos and she has my vote and no this is not roger or lance

Peace Officer said...

Kinda sucks having jail in your future just for doing your job.
Welcome to our world.

Anonymous said...

Rachel's "God is good" statement was reminiscent of Chuck Rosenthal's "I'm Blessed".

Anonymous said...

I have had the misfortune of working under Mrs Palmer as "support staff" aka menial servant. Rules are diFferent for each person depending on whether you kiss her ass or not. There's no understanding or compassion whether it be a sick child or death in the family. You're scared to use your vacation time because it may be held against you. Basically your job is to perform all functions for DA's short of accompanying them to the bathroom. Some of us have been here 20 or more years and know the drill but because we do not have a matted framed piece of paper on our wall...we are worthless. And its made very clear every day. Just know that the kindness that you show to others comes back on you. But that also goes for the bad things as well. Karma.

Anonymous said...

Man, all of this stuff is seriously "harshing" the warm-fuzzy buzz I got from "Christmas Cheer" today on the 6th Floor.  Where else can I see a bunch of political hacks and has-beens, parade around in their million dollar media room, while Rome metaphorically burns around them.

Mark W. Stephens said...

Rage,

"Mark Stephens, you forgot:

3. To get immunity in exchange for testifying.

Rage"

Actually, I didn't forget. It was made clear that she was not a target, but a witness. So, immunity from what?

Besides that, she's a prosecutor, not some street thug trying to cut deal. All she needed to do was talk to them. If she has information they need, I'm sure they'd be glad to accomodate her, without the drama and public humility of pleading the 5th.

Anonymous said...

Rachel's lawyer(s) were ineffective to let her speak to the media. Rachel was plain stupid to speak to the media.

All she could muster was "god is good" and "that's not an appropriate question." Did her hack lawyer give her any advice?

And Leitner... I see begging for court appointments in his future. Lil Bitch....

Jigmeister said...

What kind of a nut follows a witness into the grand jury and starts taking pictures. Lucky the grand jury bailiff didn't react as one might expect he would. Judge Brown was a little kind with the admonition, "make it stop". Makes you wonder what kind of game they are playing. Some kind of blackmail or some embarrassing facts against individual jurors? They already know their names, addresses, etc. Bet they have run backgrounds on them for some kind of end run in case of an adverse result.

Anonymous said...

This Foolishness has got to stop

http://carey2.blogspot.com/2011/12/this-foolishness-has-got-to-stop-now.html

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 657pm; ok then you are either Don Hooper, Rachel Palmer, Hannah, or most likely, Little Jimmy.

Anonymous said...

When there were three candidates running for DA in 2008 and Jim lost, he said he would not endorse either Siegler or Lykos. He then said he would vote for Lykos and was made first assistant. That looked bad without any help from the press. Now one of Lykos' top assistants takes the fifth in front of a grand jury. That looks bad without any help from the press. Now Jim is standing in the hallway saying the press just wants this to look bad. That looks bad without any help from the press.

Anonymous said...

What a great contrast in leadership. No matter which employee Ms. Lykos decides to hang in the wind with the media - AND regardless of how you personally feel about Jim Leitner - Johnny Holmes would have been front and center fielding questions from the media especially if he thought the investigation of not his but the PEOPLE'S D.A.'s Office was unfairly under attack.

Lykos reminds me of the old french General who during WWI chose to lead from the rear......several hundred miles from the trenches and in a cushy mansion.

How bout someone hire some of thosse protestors and pay them a meal and bath to simply walk in circles in front of the courthouse carrying signs: " B.O.L.O. for Pat Lykos ". Last seen hinding behind the "Schultz" defense: " I know NOTHING!!!"

Anonymous said...

This is a great political gift. I always saw Palmer as the heir apparent to Lykos. She is young in relation to Lykos and married a political consultant for crying outloud.
It's over for Palmer and Lykos. She did this in December when people are in a good mood and have time to talk and remember. They won't forget this.
Either Blakemore or Anderson is probably drunk with happiness at this point. Probably dancing in the street.
I have to think Palmer is so stupid she didn't consultant with Lykos about what she was going to do beforehand. Knowing how good Chow and lykos are in the political realm there is no way they would sanction this.
The grand jury convening look bad but the politically adroit Lykos could shimmy around that.
But the 5th? You just made Lykos and yourself look guilty no matter what happens.
Hooper vs. Blakemore? I'll take Blakemore every time.
This was so boneheaded I still can't understand it.
Not sure if filing time is over for the Repub primaries but I would suggest filing against anyone else associated with the Lykos administration. I know it's late but you can win. Pay the fee and fees associated with not having the required signatures because you can win. Believe me.

Anonymous said...

News from the Bunker stated earlier this week..."All personnel moves, including moving Rachel Palmer are on hold". Can you clairfy where she was moving? Is this a pending promotion that is on hold until after she testifies?

Anonymous said...

Given the photographer in the Grand Jury Room with his camera - I hope that HC provides extra security for all the jurors and any of the judges or political candidates that the photographer has named as part of his creative conspiracy theory...!

Anonymous said...

"God is good" to those who went to the grand jury, had the balls to answer their questions, and told the truth. As Anonymous 7:39 stated "Karma" and it is about to happen to Rachel, Patsy, Lietner, and the rest of her crew.

Anonymous said...

She is doing the right thing. Its apparent that these people are out of control. This Judge, Grand Jury and the special prosecutors need to be held accountable for this vindictive political mission they are on. Anderson should be asham of himself also.

Anonymous said...

Trial Question: Detective, the defendant invoked his 5th amendment right against self incrimination when you began questioning him. Any wrong with that?

Answer: No. The prosecutor at the DAs office did it too.

Anonymous said...

Rachel was being moved to Donna's position as Public Information Attorney--handling the media. Donna was being moved to special crimes.

Thomas Hobbes said...

Murray - If you are still contributing to the Chronicle blogfest, have you considered providing a brief primer on the 5th Amendment: what it means and why, although it is available to all, it cannot be invoked in all situations?

Anonymous said...

anon 7:05-
Leitner, you have got to pull your head out of Patsy's butt and see the real world. There is no conspiracy! The Grand Jury is doing the right thing and Rachel isn't. Anderson is trying to throw a life line to the DAO and you keep cutting it.

Anonymous said...

Old Dog re: American's with Disability Act:

Practically speaking the Act is primarily CIVIL in remedial (punishment) but it depends on who brings the suit. The Individual or the Department of Justice. Also, there is the issue of suing Governmental Agencies. Bottom Line: No Jail time just $ and injunctive relief: When the Department of Justice brings suit, the Department may seek injunctive relief, monetary damages, and if necessary to vindicate public interests, civil penalties of up to $50,000 for the first violation and up to $100,000 for any subsequent violation.

I don't read anything in the Act that prevents going after CHOW personally.

The real "red meat" in Shirley's case criminally is all about the time sheet and Co. $, tampering and what happened to mark Fury JP. Read Mark's Post on Fury.

Anonymous said...

Anon 523pm; why does she need to be promoted? Just give her a raise. She already makes more than more than a few people who have been at the office longer than she has. I wonder how long she has been making chief salary. Makes me sick. Also makes me sick that if anyone else in the office took the fifth, and by implication made Lykos look bad, there would be some punitive measure. Never for Rachel.

Rachel started all of this with her vendetta against Amanda Culbertson. Bottom line, the state would never want to have Amanda working on their cases anymore. Let her go be the Dr. DiMaio for the defense. Her opinion on bat vans and breathalyzer's differs from other toxicologists. However, the manner that this was done just smells like bad politics. Come to think of it, so do Lykos and Palmer. They have the same tyrannical attitude when it comes to managing their people. It's appalling. Neither know how to treat people. And both are incompetent. Both will also make decision solely based on what makes them look better, not what is the right thing to do. And they do not care who it effects as long as it's not them.


I believe some other commenters may be right in that she wants to be compelled to testify, so that she is not biting the hand that feeds her. Literally. (back to the chief salary.) But it seems to me that if anyone is or should be in trouble for making poor decisions and giving orders to baby prosecutors, it is going to be her. Lykos has insulated herself from this, and everything else. So why grant RP immunity? Or is it all going to turn out with no indictments what so ever?

I believe that people want RP to be gone as much as they want Lykos gone. Wonder how she and Don Hooper live with themselves? His behavior in the hearing in the courtroom speaks volumes. Taking pictures of the grand jurors. Seriously? Act like an adult. Oh that's right, you can't. They are made for each other.

Anonymous said...

I didn't forget. It was made clear that she was not a target, but a witness. So, immunity from what?

She may not be a target only because they don't know everything yet. Once they know who was involved and with what, she may find herself in the cross hairs.

Ollie North wasn't a target either, but without his transactional immunity he would not have sung like he did--and he implicated himself in much of what he disclosed.

Besides that, she's a prosecutor, not some street thug trying to cut deal. All she needed to do was talk to them. If she has information they need, I'm sure they'd be glad to accomodate her, without the drama and public humility of pleading the 5th.

I'm sure they would, except her position in the administration would not allow her to cooperate. And again, she may be worried that somethig she says could make her a target.

Rage

Anonymous said...

It's funnier if you know the back story, but given Palmer's "that is not an appropriate question," I thought you would all get a kick out of this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fOfcSv7UTyw

Rage

Anonymous said...

Anon @1:42

Rachel Palmer does not care if evidence is admissible or not. She has no regard for defendant's rights of confrontation when she puts testimonial evidence into play as business records,over objections which are often erroneously overruled. Anything to win and of course look good doing it. I can see where see would fit in well as public information director. She has some connections with the press who do not hesitate to print her side of the story without even attempting to get the defense perspective. She is right "God is good". She on the other hand is worse than a street thug, in the way she wields the power of her office without regard for justice. Her brand of justice is liken to that of the Pharisees, good in appearance, but rotten to the core. No immunity for her because she is a big part of the corruption and needs to answer for it.

Anonymous said...

If Bridgwater (no "e" in the middle) is really as bad as you claim, someone should file to run against him in the primary.

He may have fairly strong party support now, but it will erode if he starts to look bad in the media. He could come to be seen as a liability to the Republican ticket. Whether that would happen is the risk you would take.

The filing deadline has been changed to Monday the 19th. However, filing for all positions will open back up for a few days after the redistricting mess is finally resolved, probably around mid-Jan. The primary has now been put off to April 3rd.

You would likely have to pay the filing fee since it would be hard to get the full number of signatures by then. However, even with the filing fee, I think you still have to have 250 signatures of registered voters in Harris County who have not signed the opponent's petitions. Plus, you need plenty of extras in case some of your signatures don't qualify.

It's doable if you have friends and family who will take petitions to church or other big events.

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:10am said:
[She (Palmer) is young in relation to Lykos and married a political consultant for crying outloud.]


Since when did Don Hooper qualify as a "campaign consultant?" Is that the latest thing he claims to be?

Ask him to list any and all paying candidates who have ever hired him. If he names any, look up the campaign finance reports of the candidates online and see if they list him under expenses. As far as I know, his lifetime client base is zero. Why do you think he has so much time on his hands?

Anonymous said...

@11:29 after her media debut yesterday, I can NOT see her as the Public Information Director, A doctor should not practice law, a media relations professional should not do surgery and Rachel Palmer should NOT talk to the media.

Anonymous said...

Who is Clay Rawlings? I don't know him, but read his profile. Based on his resume alone - I suspect he is not the best choice as her lawyer unless the conspiracy theory holds and Rachel gets ran over by the runaway Grand Jury. Comments?

Mark W. Stephens said...

Rage,

I'll concede that point. Maybe I gave her too much credit. Maybe she HAS done something she wants or needs immunity for.

But I disagree that "her position" in the administration would not allow her to cooperate. That is completely HER choice. She needs to decide what is right and what is wrong, then CHOOSE to do the right thing.

I know from experience that can be a VERY hard decision. Not talking means allowing the corruption to continue. Talking means sacrificing your own career. Been there, done that.

It seems she has made her choice as well...


Rage

Anonymous said...

@1:18 I found a payment - Mark Goldberg paid him $5000 in a 2001 city council race. Oh - I just heard Mark won't provide a reference for him - so not sure if the 10 year old payment w/ no reference qualifies him as a campaign consultant in 2011

Anonymous said...

Old Dog talking strictly law here to:

On December 16, 2011 11:27 A.M. “Rage” said”

All she needed to do was talk to them. If she has information they need, I'm sure they'd be glad to accommodate her, without the drama and public humility of pleading the 5th. I'm sure they would, except her position in the administration would not allow her to cooperate. And again, she may be worried that something she says could make her a target.

Are you nucking futs? Seriously? Dude…stick to Civil Law. Haven’t you ever heard of the Special Crimes “fishing expedition”? “Hey, case might not be as strong as we’d like but let’s get the target into the Grand Jury and at least try to get perjury on them”.

Rage – a person sitting in that little chair with only the prosecutor and G.J. sitting around them might not be in the best position to play “fish” with the State. A target never knows what little piece of the puzzle they may inadvertently provide that seals the deal and gets them indicted for something they said truthfully, OR, PREVIOUSLY UNTRUTHFULLY (Read Bennett’s post on reasons why she took the 5th).

Once again as a previous poster stated you are now creating a habit of propounding a position or rhetorical question – then giving your own answer to your own uninformed question. Don’t you remember WHY Ollie North “Got Off” after being convicted? Do you think HE felt at the time: “Hey, all I need to do is talk to these SPECIAL PROSECUTORS and I’m sure they'd be glad to accommodate me, without the drama and public humility of pleading the 5th? I'm sure they would, accept my position in the administration whether I’m a target or not?
You seem like a Clancy kind of guy. Does the “Target” ever really know it’s “lit up” before the bomb hits………THE TARGET?

By comparison you know damn well what mediators do CIVILALLY once a prelim. Agreement is made but needs tweaking…….yeah, sure, everyone just shakes hands and gives their “word” to follow everything “agreed to” over an 8 hour mediation. Right.

Anonymous said...

Old Dog:

Clay is an EXCELLENT lawyer and former prosecutor from the 80's. palmer talked to the press on her own and Clay wasn't there the first time she testified.

Anonymous said...

She was a screaming two-year-old at that misdemeanor hearing with Dane Johnson over a freaking first-time DWI. Now, we know why, I guess.

I've never seen any DA anywhere turn bright red, call someone names, and start stomping like a child. It was truly embarrassing.

I'm cracking up at the idea of her involved with media. I hope I'm around to see the hissy fit she throws if this hits the fan.

Anonymous said...

I've been there too, Stephens, and I agree that she needs to do the right thing regardless of the consequences. I meant that she would not be allowed to talk due to her position and the blow back she would get. Never intended to excuse her conduct.

You may have given her too much credit in one respect, but not enough where the immunity issue is concerned. If she is ordered to testify, she gets immunity. If she is given it, then she gets broader immunity. Win win for her.

Rage

Anonymous said...

Anon @ 7:39 PM

It is unfortunate that you have run across attorneys in the office that think little of support staff because in my experience there are many attorneys that very much appreciate the support staff and the work they do and do not look down on people at all.

Anonymous said...

What is with the photos being taken of the GJ? Is this so dirty dog Leitner can send the minions, or perhaps private investigators, to follow the GJ to find dirt on them?

Anonymous said...

Maybe she perjured herself the first time she testified and that's why she pled the fifth.

Anonymous said...

Dear Old Dog:

Perhaps it's time to learn a new trick. Such as reading comprehension.

Go back and read who posted what, and then get back to me.

Hugs and kisses,

Rage

Anonymous said...

Yea, what is with the photos? Seems like someone needs to be held in contempt if that is true.

Seems like the Bar might care about that one...

Anonymous said...

NEWS FROM THE BUNKER

Item: Queeg looked bad on TV yesterday. She who must be obeyed furious about how bad he looked especially on the day of her fundraiser. Queeg convinced that ADA's hid info from him and now he will be indicted.

Item: Glow from Lykos recent trip to Vegas and the slots faded rapidly. Her fundraiser last nite was in River Oaks was not well attended. Low turnout attributed to season.

Item: Palmers move to Media Head all but cancelled after "God is Good" sound byte.

End of line

Anonymous said...

For those who came in late, the following is archived on the Harris County GOP Website from the 2010 election cycle:

Rachel Ann Palmer
Candidate for Judge, County Criminal Court No. 13

Rachel Ann Palmer is a fourth-generation Texan with deep roots in our community. She has dedicated her professional career to justice and protecting society. She is seeking the Republican nomination to be the next Judge of Harris County Criminal Court-at-Law No. 13.

Born in Webster, Rachel spent her childhood in Nassau Bay. Rachel graduated from Clear Creek High School and then attended the University of Texas. She graduated with an undergraduate degree in government. Rachel then worked as a substitute teacher and later became a buyer’s assistant for Neiman Marcus in Dallas. She then attended South Texas College of Law. She also took law courses at the University of Notre Dame and Leiden University in the Netherlands. While studying overseas, she worked for the Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague as an intern on war crimes cases. After her work overseas, she returned to Texas, passed the state bar exam and went to work as a prosecutor with the Harris County District Attorney’s Office. Rachel quickly showed herself to be a tough, ethical, reliable, responsible and reasonable advocate for justice.

She started work in the Misdemeanor Division, tried more than 40 cases in two years and moved to felony courts, where she tried numerous cases and two 1994 murder cases. Rachel also served as Acting Chief Prosecutor in the 315th Juvenile District Court. Rachel now serves as Deputy Chief of the Harris County District Attorney’s Office. She supervises 50 to 60 prosecutors every day in all of Harris County’s 15 misdemeanor courts – giving her the much-needed experience to run one of those courts as a judge and do so in a way that protects justice and provides a benefit to the taxpayers.

Anonymous said...

anon 9:08
We just need to sit back and watch the show. I feel sure more is coming. Just saying......

Anonymous said...

The photography of the grand jurors by Palmer's husband is the most disturbing thing to me. That's not only inappropriate, but dangerous and vindictive. At the minimum it is threatening behavior, and at it's worst it is foreshadowing of retaliation.

And conspiracy theorists are on Lykos's side on this? Damn.

Mark W. Stephens said...

Rage,

True. But its very telling that the Special Prosecutors didn't think she was a target, but that SHE apparently thinks she is a target or at least a potential target. She knows better than anyone what she has done or not done.

I know both of the Special Prosecutors and they're both stand up guys. If they said she wasn't a target, then she's not. Its not like they were trying to trick her into a confession. But, as you pointed out, they don't have all the details yet and she may well know that somewhere in the mix, she could be considered a target.

One of the great ironies of this whole thing is that after Lykos won the primary and was facing Bradford, she and Leitner asked to meet with me to discuss the whole Bradford situation, since she was going head to head against him.

One of the things I harped on when we met, was the corruption Bradford would bring to the office if he was elected and how it would destroy the office.

Looking back now...well...wow.

Anonymous said...

She was never electable, God is good. Everybody saw right through her.

So, this doesn't change her non-future as a judge. It does change her future at the DA's office, thank God, in whatever administration is to come.

Anonymous said...

Don't you just love it when it all comes together. Keep up the good work Murray, you do make a difference.

Anonymous said...

anon 3:07
Photographer Hooper isn't a lawyer, but you'd hope the Bar is watching this entire ordeal! Does the elected DA have to be licensed? You know, since apparently they don't have to be able to try cases, maybe she can stay on after the bar takes her license...meh

Anonymous said...

While I don't think anyone can argue with Palmer's right to invoke the 5th, clearly the real question is why she felt the need to do so.

During my time with the office I attended numerous meetings presided over by Palmer in which she told us it was our duty to "do the right thing," to "see that justice was done." Palmer’s invocation of the 5th shows that she failed to practice what she preached. She obviously at some point strayed from the path, and is now in full damage control mode.

Anonymous said...

Anyone who is naive enough to think the State Bar is watching anything needs to be better informed. The State Bar never acts unless something egregious is brought to their attention, usually in the form of a complaint. A former ADA was charged with Official Oppression 10 years ago. The State Bar was never aware of it and only responded to it this past year when a Judge brought it to their attention. Don't kid yourself about the State Bar "monitoring the news" in Harris County. It doesn't happen.

Mark W. Stephens said...

Old Dog,

It appears you mistook my post for Rage's.

And it appears my explanation was inadequate.

The point I was trying to convey was that she is well represented. And if her ultimate goal was to obtain immunity, then she and her attorney could easily have initiated talks with the Special Prosecutors. They could have negotiated an immunity deal straught up if, indeed, she had done something to warrant a need for immunity.

By taking the initiative, she would have given at least the appearance that she was a cooperative witness. By refusing to talk and pleading the 5th, she put herself in an adversarial role. Now, the perception is that she has something to hide.

Having an ADA, in an upper management position no less, pleading the 5th in response to a Criminal Investigation is a BAD thing...no matter how you look at it.

Ultimately, the point is, it could have been avoided.

Anonymous said...

For many of the current A.D.A.'s, this whole situation is kinda like working hard, buying a nice house in Spring, and then five years down the road finding out the house 2 doors down is a crackhouse. Now, you know they exist, and you know it happens, but you're absolutely dismayed to find out that after all your hard, honest work, after all your care and maintenance, some dumbass bitch went and fucked up everyone's market values.

Say what you want about Rachel. She's unethical and sneaky as a manager. Does anyone honestly believe she's any better as a lawyer? I'm surprised she had the brains to recognize she needed to plead the Fifth. Sure she may take the Gang down with her, but she's also taking those of us who bust our asses to do right with her. She erodes everyone's reputation, which, as anyone will tell you, is all we have and takes years to establish. Everyone in the know knew Rachel was worthless before she ever became deputy dawg. Now those of us who actually had no clue what was going on are tainted.

Anonymous said...

Old Dod to Rage: So this (disected) comments for reading ease, are not YOURS?

December 16, 2011 11:27 AM
Rage

"Besides that, she's a prosecutor, not some street thug trying to cut deal.

1) All she needed to do was talk to them.

2) If she has information they need, I'm sure they'd be glad to accomodate her, without the drama and public humility of pleading the 5th.

3) I'm sure they would, except her position in the administration would not allow her to cooperate.

4) And again, she may be worried that somethig she says could make her a target.

Rage

December 16, 2011 11:27 AM

Anonymous said...

anon 724....if that's true, shame on the Bar.

Anonymous said...

If half of the rumors are true, the decisions were dumb as rocks and accomplished nothing, so we can guess where they came from.

Follow the email trail, Isiah, you're our only hope.

Anonymous said...

Getting Older Dog to Mark W. Stephens:

You are correct and thank you for the professional correction. I now understand completely what YOU were saying but didn't come right out and say it: NORMALLY:

In dealing with white collar crimes it is not at all cuncommon for the defense to make a profer - or talk - hypothetically or even have the defendant talk via her lawyer but there has to be a level of TRUST. Ultimately if some big sting were to occur I could even see an informant contract which obviously is not the case here.

You ARE in my very humble opinion correct in what you have said but maybe in another case with a regular assistant district attorney in Special Crimes dealing with an Organized Crime case.

Due to the factors so aptly pointed out by Mark bennett in "Live by the hatchet - Die by the hatchette" it doesn't mean there isn't something to investigate. As a citizen the damage by Ms. palmer taking the Fifth truly is a major political blow.

What really gauls me is how Lykos has seemingly even left her Loyal troops to swing in the wind. My gawd "lady" get behind a microphone and show your have the balls to field the "hard ball" questions as well as the soft puffy ones dealing with selfserving irrelevant non productive but good sounding programs.

Where is The Public Relations person? Lietner was on the ropes. How can an office unravel so quickly in the face of media cameras unless the people appearing are affraid of their boss and or hiding something. Jim - quit NOW! You are a good man and I know you don't need to be left hanging like this.

A good name is worth all the riches in the world. Palmer and that crazy photo deal of a husband is now - for an outsider completely discredited. To be charged with seeking justice and not merely convict yet to take the 5th - Yes it should have been handled if possible informally.

But I don't see this one going anywhere except by the book to show even though the creation of the 185th deal was like watching sausage being made - no doubt ALL parties involved in the investigation are doing things VERY formal. News flash: Delay is not a good thing here politically.

Free very cheep political advice to Mike: Be ready in a debate or in some venue to be asked what things has the present D.A. done in the Office that has had a possitive effect on the Office?

Thanks again Mr. Stephens for professionally correcting my misunderstanding.

Anonymous said...

anon 7:24

Please tell me how one would go about filing a complaint with the Texas Bar? What are the criteria, does it have to be someone who has been directly affected by the action?

If anyone knows someone well enough they could send a link to this blog. I have sent this link to many different people. I usually give just a little explanation about the goings on at the center.I tell them they should talk to Mr. Newman. Amazingly enough, things happen sometimes.

In fact, if I had a name of someone in the Texas Bar I would send it myself.

If everyone takes action to let the right people know, the problem will eventually be solved.

Anonymous said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4CzocBkrWpA


Palmer needs to watch this.

Anonymous said...

We all know this is politically motivated and that this Grand Jury is on a mission. It would be interesting to see if a Grand Jury would be seated to investigate " JUDGE BROWN ", this Grand Jury(whom are friends of Browns)and a few more, do to their conduct.

Anonymous said...

ANON 12:09
Oh caca. This is not politically motived. They only are getting what they deserve. It's karma come to give them thier just dues.

By thier very actions they have invited close scrutiny. Take your head out of the sand and think with a clear head. Did you really think your free ride would go on forever?

Anonymous said...

There is a lot of screaming in these comments, but not a lot of law or real experience talking. A non-target can become a target in the blink of an eye based upon an answer they give to a grand jury. They give an answer then they are told by the prosecutor "I now have to to give you these warnings according to the CCP 20.17" but the cat is already out of the bag and the person has already implicated themselves. That is precisely why a series of SCOTUS case beginning with Kastigar, beginnning in the 70s require a witness be given immunity before being compelled to testify. There is, however, no immunity from perjury. FYI, these ARE attorneys pro tem not SPECIAL PROSECUTORS - by order of the Court and law. There is a difference. SEE CCP 2.07. If some of the commenters etc. spent more time reading law and less time grinding a political axe...

Mark W. Stephens said...

Old Dog,

You're certainly welcome, and thank you. I appreciate your insight. Right on the money

-Mark

p.s.
Whoever posted that Chapelle video link...Thank you. I needed a good laugh and that was hillarious!

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:09 aka JADEd If the grand jury is on a mission, then Rachel Palmer is one of their operatives. I know we will call her agent 069. And what of the 232nd Grand Jury, who was entirely selected from the jury assembly room? Are you saying that their investigation is righteous? Contrary to your Chron post, they are looking at prominent members of the Lykos inner circle. Not Rosenthal hangers on. I am amazed that Murray still gives you a voice on this blog.

Anonymous said...

Old Dog, you basically just apologized to Stephens and said what I said to him already. Except when he rubs your nose in your own shit, you don't act like an ass like you did with me.

Lame.

Rage

Anonymous said...

Intern: God is good but the job market aint. I hope you have already started looking. You really don't want to be marketing yourself as having any involvement with the criminal prosecutors (that's Criminals who are Prosecutors) at 1201. It's real bad. If I was hiring someone from the office right now. I wouldn't hire someone. If you can't see it, its real bad!

When Rachel is indicted, I have my speech for TV all prepared..."God IS good, and it is a GREAT day!"

Anonymous said...

anon 12:09

AMEN!!!