Saturday, February 11, 2012

GUEST POST: The Difference Between "Tough" and "Just Plain Mean"

From our Guest-Poster, Spunk:

How ironic it was to see the Ibarra brothers on Channel 13 commenting about how it feels to be investigated for investigating.  It was the Ibarras' federal lawsuit which indirectly drew in the Harris County DA's Office and ultimately lead to Rosenthal's emails, destroying his career.  De ja vu all over again?  

Before she took to dodging and ducking from Ted Oberg (thanks, Ted) and Wayne Dolcefino (thanks, Wayne), Pat Lykos was a compulsive camera seeker.  Two of her favorite platitudes were, "We live in the 3rd largest metropolitan areas of the United States, ladies and gentleman ...."-  a pointless comment, except to remind herself and everyone else of the vastness of her kingdom; and, "They (they being anyone who disagrees with her, criticizes her, refuses to endorse her, those who investigate her or run against her) don't like me because I'm tough..." 

She still uses these lines, but more rarely now and in smaller, selective campaign venues where she is willing to show her face, surrounded by her traveling posse which includes Rachel Palmer.  In fact, during one of her staged media statements good old Ted Oberg asked her something to the effect of, what have you done about Rachel Palmer?  Her reply was dismissive, but she felt compelled to say that she hadn't even spoken to Rachel Palmer.  LIE: Rachel had been with her the night before at a campaign event.

In a small attempt to convince Pat Lykos to stop describing herself as "tough," consider the following analysis and the real  difference between the words 'tough" as she would like to be known, and just being"mean," which is really all she is:

Tough is defined by Merriam Webster as "uncompromising determination, capable of enduring strain, hardship or severe labor (ha!); stubbornly fought." (It also includes, "not easily chewed," which may in fact apply to her.)

Mean is defined as "worthy of little regard: contemptible; characterized by petty selfishness or malice, causing trouble or bother: vexatious." 

Let us review known facts about Pat Lykos and consider whether each indicates toughness? or meanness?

1.  Most judges hire only one or maybe two court coordinators.  Pat Lykos had to hire scores of them because she treated them like dirt, they were afraid of her, and they would quit.  I can't recall any of their names because we really never got to know any of them.  It would be interesting to interview a few of them. Not tough, MEAN.

2.  Judge Pat Lykos also failed to maintain a consistent staff from the District Clerk's Office and is notoriously prone to banning prosecutors from her court room. Not tough, MEAN.

3.  After taking office as the District Attorney, one of her first efforts was to terminate the contracts of prosecutors determined by she and her first assistant to have been too loyal to Kelly Siegler so that she could use those pay slots to bring in her own unqualified political friends. (And PS- you missed some of the Kelly supporters and more than one has successfully kissed a-- right up the ranks and into your lap and may be at this moment trying to bring you down despite smiling at you and saying good morning to you everyday. The leaks are among people you favor highly and that's quite hilarious.)  In doing so, she threw away 100's of years of talent and experience which, when added to the scores of people who quit in response to her being elected, has made Harris County the most dangerous place to be a victim in the entire state of Texas...but I digress... Did she stop there? Of course not.  She learned that many of those she terminated were also being paid to teach the Texas Penal Code and the Code of Criminal Procedure to the cadets at the Houston Police Department Academy. She approached HPD and proposed that if they would stop paying the terminated prosecutors to teach, she would replace them FOR FREE with some of her own remaining prosecutors.  HPD took her deal, and suddenly people like Ted Wilson, Lyn McClellan, Craig Goodhart, and Vic Wisner (criminal law experts worth every penny of taxpayer money to educate new police officers to be good public servants) were fired and were replaced with, I kid you not, several young prosecutors with very little trial experience or teaching experience.  Most of the replacement prosecutors are good people and hard workers, but no match for the Mount Rushmore of experience HPD let go at Lykos' request.  As a result, because of her single desire to retaliate against Kelly supporters, the very next cadet class at HPD's Academy had the lowest passage rate in HPD history, and arguably our streets are less safe now because the graduating officers are less prepared to effectively police.  Not tough Pat, just MEAN. (And stupid.)

4.  Fast forward to 2011, the year of Amanda Culbertson.  We all know what happened.  Culbertson voiced concerns about BAT Van test results, and whether or not Culbertson was correct the DA's office and Pat Lykos personally decided to keep this information secret and continued to prosecute defendants without disclosing the fact that witness Culbertson had questions about test results.  Criminal or not, the DA's Office remains G U I L T Y of Brady/ethics violations to this day for not disclosing an expert witness's concerns to the defense immediately.  The violation remains, regardless of whether in the end Culbertson was wrong. On top of all this, did Lykos and her inner circle stop there? Hell no.  Lykos/Rachel Palmer made the additional effort to persuade HCSO to join them in recommending to Commissioner's Court for the first time ever that the Lone Star College Contract (where Culbertson was employed) with Harris County for 20 years be cancelled, thereby causing Culbertson to lose her job. Now Lykos will say that DPS, (the "premier law enforcement agency in Texas" as she put it, who is ironically investigating Lykos at this time and may very well get her indicted) was a better financial deal for Harris County.  Whatever, it remains clear that the motivation was to retaliate against Culbertson just like having all the pro-Kelly for DA supporters fired from teaching at the HPD Academy ( see #3 above.) Not tough, MEAN.            

4.  Another of Pat Lykos' endeavors upon taking office as DA was to attempt to prohibit prosecutors from running for judge.  The operations manual was re-written with a tone similar to a veiled threat issued to anyone who might desire to run for office.  She even invited visiting Judge Mike Anderson to her office for lunch and discussed this ludicrous concept with him and even flirted with the notion that Mike Anderson might become some sort of adviser to the DA's office so that his affiliation with her might lessen the chances that he would ever decide to run against her. Thank God he declined.  Much to her chagrin, those darned Federal laws prohibited her from stopping prosecutors from seeking judicial office.  Tough, no.  MEAN, yes.  

5.  As DA, Pat Lykos, an award-winning public official acknowledged by organizations such as the Innnocence Project for her successful pandering to get public attention any and every way possible, has dumped the long-standing philosophy of all former DA's in Harris County that if a police officer is intentionally killed in the line of duty, the DA's Office will seek the death penalty, period, and the DA himself or herself will be lead prosecutor on the case.  No wonder the police unions are against you, Pat.  You have no respect for the rank and file of law enforcement, whether they be patrol officers working the nightshift or your own hard-working baby prosecutors or even the lowest file clerk in your office.  They are beneath your consideration.  It is NOT TOUGH to let murderers of police officers experience the criminal justice system without at least TRYING to obtain the ultimate punishment allowable by Texas Law.  Insensitive and mean, yes. 

6.  Another situation which provides insight into whether Pat Lykos is really tough or just mean is the Mark Donnelly and Rifi Newaaz incident.  The newly-elected DA, still riding high on her accomplishment of becoming DA and looking for any camera she could find to get in front of, took an opportunity to make a front page example out of two of the most respected and honorable prosecutors she had working for her in the office.  Without bothering to (a) talk to Mark or Rifi herself, (b) or talking to the Judge in the case, Pat Lykos decided to call a press conference and report to the media that because her prosecutors lost a Batson challenge during jury selection, she acted swiftly to demote them and to give them days off without pay.  It turns out that Donnelly and Newaz really hadn't violated Batson; the judge just granted the defense's motion 'out of an abundance of caution,' and assigned no malice to either of the prosecutors for the way they exercised their strikes on potential jurors.  Lykos later privately approached Donnelly to let him know she may have overreacted but refused to retract her statements to the press about him, refused to reverse his demotion, and refused to give him the pay he lost.  Not surprisingly, he left after finding a job at the US Attorney's Office.  During that hiring process, Lykos contacted the US Attorney's Office and tried to convince them not to hire Mark Donnelly.  Am I noticing a retaliatory pattern?  HPD Academy instructors fired, Culbertson loses her job, and she also does this to Mark?  Not tough, mobster mentality MEANNESS, Pat.

7.  Shirley Cornelius, career prosecutor and mother of a special needs son.  The DA's Office under Pat Lykos has earned a federal lawsuit as reward for its treatment of Shirley Cornelius.  She was transferred to obscure assignments and pressured to falsify her time sheet and was told she could not work her 8 hour day in a time frame consistent with the needs of her son.  Shirley resigned because of MEANNESS, not toughness.

8.  Pat Lykos has turned the appellate division into the Island of Misfit Toys.  Once the most prestigious appellate division anywhere in the United States, the administration has whittled this most important department down to a mere shell of its former self, and today Alan Curry and a few leftover brilliant others are pulling an enormous work load to absorb the two non-producers hiding out there, drawing huge salaries while knowing nothing about appellate law and doing nothing but either running her own political campaign for judge (Lana Shadwick) or laying low hoping not to be fired under pressure by the public's outrage for taking the 5th in front of a grand jury ( peek- aboo, we see you Rachel Palmer!) You should be ashamed for so many things, Pat Lykos, and high among them is for your absolute lack of concern for the people who work hard to make those hard-earned convictions stick and who work every day to keep your office in line with the law.  MEAN.

9.  And ditto #8 above, as to your trial bureau prosecutors.  While you enlarge your own office, replace carpets with hardwoods and make the 6th floor conference room a  high tech media stage; while you hire highly paid Public Information Officers, Community Outreach representatives, Lobbyists for the legislative sessions all of whom conduct dubious taxpayer business at best and are suspected of working primarily on your re-election campaign; while you give away money such as $500K to HPD as a media stunt to placate the BAT van situation, you have hundreds of prosecutors who have not received a pay raise in years, some of them never.  You do not care to realize how hard these people work to make your operation function and make you look like you know what's really going on when you don't.  They work after 5, before 8 am and on holidays and weekends to handle staggering numbers of cases.  You do not realize how many of them are just trying to get to year 8 so they can vest in retirement and then QUIT.  They resent you and they know you don't care.  Look at it this way, if they quit and the DA's office never convicts anyone, you can just close down appellate all together because there won't be any appeals.  Think of the money you'll have to waste somewhere else.  Your maltreatment of the work-horse prosecutors, the back bone of your operation is no indication of your toughness, just meanness. 

10. Most recently, you have dragged your entire office through a harrowing grand jury investigation.  You constantly preach of this 'politically motivated conspiracy.'   Yet that so -called conspiracy resulted in no indictment, when we all know that grand jury could have easily issued multiple indictments if it had wanted to do so maliciously. Seems like the process worked in your favor, so please shut up about the political conspiracy because there is not one. But you apparently can't shut up, as evidenced by your decision to come out of hiding and read a statement on 1/31 because you could not resist repeating your conspiracy mantra.  It backfired because Ted Oberg was finally able to ask you questions again, questions you weren't ready for.  And you lied, and you looked like a liar and you got caught at it.  Call it what you want, but by your own admissions taxpayer resources, equipment, and work time were used by you for your own political purposes--to stalk andd intimidate and follow and harass grand jurors, investigate their backgrounds and those of the judge, special prosecutors, and your opponent.  You are Richard Nixon.  No wonder lots of people do not like you or have any respect for you or your arrogant Chicago mobster mentality.   Official Opression, Retaliation, Conspiracy, Public Corruption, Misuse of Taxpayer Resources = YOU. 

What about that other grand jury investigating you?  Explain how THAT is politically motivated, since you never seem to address this in your propaganda.  The 263rd grand jury was empanelled from a random jury pool.  And we have yet to learn what will come from that contempt hearing.  You sent your people after transcripts AFTER being ordered by a judge and a court of appeals to stay out of the grand jury proceedings.

Judge Brown should consider additional contempt show cause hearings based upon the DA's offices own admission that it used grand jurors' names and personal information for political purposes AFTER you sealed those names.  

Thank goodness you cannot touch me, but on behalf of those silently trying to continue to work at the DA's Office despite the fact that you are bringing down the walls around them, the truth is going to come out and when it does the law and the voters are going to hold you responsible for every MEAN thing you have done. 

48 comments:

Anonymous said...

Outstanding Spunk. Maybe BJ should read this and open his eyes. He needs to quit putting the republican party's welfare ahead of the welfare of the citizens of Harris County.

Anonymous said...

We are wondering if Gary Polland will be providing another list of ADA's to fire like he did after she won her first term. Polland made no secret of his hit list and gleefully bragged that Pat had asked him for one back in 2008.

Also not tough, but mean.

Anonymous said...

Does Anderson have a list? Murray are you coming back? We hope so/You can make sure things are run the way it should be.

Anonymous said...

FYI

It's the 232nd grand jury doing the other investigation

Anonymous said...

WOW: Spunk thank you for this educational post. It sums up Lycos perfectly. Takes you from day one with Lycos to current. So informative anyone can read this and get the whole story.

Thank you Murray for sharing this with us. This is the type of info that needs to get out to the public. These type of articles will make all the difference in the outcome at the voting booth. I will be sending this post on to others. You never know what will happen.

Anonymous said...

Great post. I have one other "mean" story. I remember attending an awards ceremony on the 6th floor in which two ADA's were recognized by the FBI for work they had done on a murder case invovling some children. The FBI SAC in Houston was there presenting the awards. Her majesty, PL, seemed annoyed that she had been bothered to attend this important event recognizing two outstanding prosecutors. (I should mention that one prosecutor was unintentionally left out of this particular award.) Her majesty refused to take part in offering any remarks or photographs with the awardees or the SAC. I, personally, was embarrased and ashamed. The two prosecutors were professionals and made no public comments about the obvious snub. To me, this was Pl just being mean.

Anonymous said...

All those that dare all Anderson supporters (yea, I'm talking to you Don)to put their cash on the line & speak up or shut up, this piece explains why we don't. Most of us can't afford to put our job on the line, but can & will vote! Can & will get all our friends to vote! Can & will get everyone we know to put a sign in their yard!Can & will encourage all who don't work for Harris County to give to the Anderson campaign so fear no longer trumps what's best for the public! Put that in your camel and smoke it....

Anonymous said...

Anon 6.04-----send all voters the number of innocent people convicted in Holmes,Rosenthal era.Send the cases reversed because of Brady violations,other misconduct---Send them the names of prosecutors that gave sweetheart deals to defense lawyer friends and then when they left the "office" went to work for same defense lawyers. Give the voters the full story if you are really honest.Long Gone and Glad

Anonymous said...

AnOn 514--why don't you do it? Enlighten us all please. Names, numbers, etc. I'll be waiting !!

Anonymous said...

5:14!

The dump that JBH takes each day has more integrity than PL +all her Bureau chiefs combined.

Anonymous said...

a post well written. Thanks and please do something to get the word out beyond this blog and let the public know what Lykos, Palmer & crew are up to.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget her failure or refusal to prosecute Public Officials.

Houston City Council Member James Rodriguez

Houston City Council Member Jolanda Jones

Houston City Council Member Jarvis Johnson

Houston City Council Member Al Hoang

Harris County Constable Victor Trevino

Harris County Constable May Walker

And don't even get me started on "Activist" Quanell X

She'll have ADA's ask for a No Bill every time so she won't have to face the slightest hint of negative media. Its all about her.

That is not justice. That is not enforcing the law. That is a travesty.

Anonymous said...

Tough or mean - one more account to add to Spunk's compendium - when Lykos was judge she frequently took long "lunch" breaks (a characteristic common to many judges). However, she added a twist to this habit. Although the defense attorney and proscutor were present in the courtroom at the designated return time and the jury panel was in the jury room Lykos would be AWOL. Upon her tardy return though she would apologize to the jurors for the prosecutor and or the defense attorneys for allegdly keeping them waiting. The brazenness was obvious - the apology even was rendered in the presence of the "offending" party or parties. Yes -mean.
Calvin A. Hartmann

Day 11 said...

"We are eager to show the public all the evidence in this case." - Patricia R. Lykos (2/1/12)

"The Harris County District Attorney’s Office has long been eager to share what we know with the public. Now that the grand jury’s proceedings have ended, we will be responding—vigorously.

In the days to come, our website—HarrisCountyDA.com—will feature a new section devoted to setting the record straight." (source: www.harriscountyda.com).

Ms Lykos:

Happy Sunday! We realize today is the day of rest, but we wanted to let you know we are looking forward to this promised evidence.

Sincerely,

-the public

Anonymous said...

Those retirement checks are still coming in for people who worked at the "office"----Must not have been to bad. Same now for those working there. If it is that bad,leave and use all your talents to practice law.

Anonymous said...

Anon 1:42

I wish for you employment under Lycos.

Anonymous said...

So you're the dufus that puts definitions in his posts.

Rage

Anonymous said...

Here is an idea for everyone reading this blog. Texas is one of the few states that allows ordinary citizens and other entities not the DA to bring cases to a grand jury. Maybe its time a group of concerned lawyers to donate their time and civil service to bringing a few of these cases to a GJ independently.

Anonymous said...

The boss may not always be right ,but they are always the boss. My check comes in and I work and keep my mouth shut.The people that work here are not complaining.It is all the people that want to work here.The ones sent away because of what they had done before this boss arrived.

Anonymous said...

AnonHole 6:32pm

I work here! Horrible place to work for the last three years. People who are in charge have no clue. Those are the people who grew up in the office before Patsy. Each thought he/she could do it better but can't.

Come on Mike and Zack. There are two shots at this Target, not counting the investigations. Odds are in our favor.

Anonymous said...

6:32-
Rachel, you're blathering again. If it's not Rachel, then you are someone who nobody trusts to say anything around...

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:26

I would be willing to file one of those cases with the GJ. If you get serious about this I will give you contact information.

Anon 6:32

As far as keeping your mouth shut Good Job. About no one complaining but the people that want to work there that were sent away. Seriously if you truly believe that then I think you could use a good counselor, you seem to be suffering from delusions. Could be your schizophrenic. Maybe it is so horrible at work that your mind has made another personality come forth to take over because of the severe conditions at the DAs office.

Anonymous said...

Anon. 6:32

Could it be Stockholm Syndrome?

Anonymous said...

@anon 7:35 this is anon 6:26. Will create a new email address for you to email me tomorrow, as mine has my name in it and I'm sure we are going to want to do this privately.

Anonymous said...

In her defense, I recall that a Chief from the 5th floor (not misdemeanor) went to HPD to teach a class.

Day 12 said...

"We are eager to show the public all the evidence in this case." - Patricia R. Lykos (2/1/12)

"The Harris County District Attorney’s Office has long been eager to share what we know with the public. Now that the grand jury’s proceedings have ended, we will be responding—vigorously.

In the days to come, our website—HarrisCountyDA.com—will feature a new section devoted to setting the record straight." (source: www.harriscountyda.com).


Dear Ms. Lykos:

Hello. Perhaps we are not looking in the right spot. We would appreciate your pointing out where this new feature is on your website.

We are hopeful today is the day you eagerly release this evidence.

Sincerely,

- the public

granky2 said...

Good post. It should be in the Chronicle, but we all know that liberal excuse for a newspaper is only good for one thing and very few of us have outhouses anymore..

Anonymous said...

Can I get an AMEN!!!!

And, Hoop troll, hate to come up with the math, but just because you were vindicated under Lykos doesn't mean Lykos prosecuted you. MATH FAIL.

Anonymous said...

I'm curious. Who, besides herself, the narcissistic bitch, has ever described Lycos as "tough"? Everyone I know just thinks she's mentally unstable, crazy, unpredictable and extremely volatile. Anyone who has ever put their trust in her deserves what they get. Are you listening, Little Jimmy?

Anonymous said...

The dump that JBH takes each day has more integrity than PL +all her Bureau chiefs combined.

February 11, 2012 7:36 PM

Do you know this from personal experience? Is that you, Chuck?

Just Sayin' said...

It seems that sometimes people are so vested in a certain outcome they are blinded to other peoples' views.
Pat Lykos being a horrible individual does not excuse bad behavior of others.
Rest assured Jimmy Leitner, Rachael Palmer and even Pat Lykos will get their comeuppance. We ought not sacrifice our integrity in the process.
There is a huge difference between justice at all costs and winning at all costs.


Just Sayin'

Anonymous said...

This is Texas where being mean and tough are positive character traits.If you had ever served in the military ,you would know what tough and mean really is. It is not what you are seeing now. This is baby stuff.

Anonymous said...

6:30 - Yes. Compared to dealing with IEDs or storming the beaches of Normandy, this is relatively insignificant. But the standard to be Harris County District Attorney is not "do you suck more than Adolf Hitler or Sadam Hussein." Lykos still sucks in every way imaginable.

Anonymous said...

Watched Ted Oberg tonight. Good report but I am sure tomorrow Lykos will announce the only reason she had Don McWilliams investigate the 185th was at their request. That is about as credible as claiming they were doing a criminal investigation.

Jigmeister said...

Somebody ought to post the email Lykos sent the staff today that Oberg reported on.

Anonymous said...

What a terrible example Lykos is for the new ADAs. Is she trying to Teach them that it is ok to lie ? She is a pathetic example of truth and justice.

Anonymous said...

Ive been watching and I dont think Oberg is being truthful.

Anonymous said...

I was wondering which broom Pat Lykos will ride in on?

Anonymous said...

10:32. Donnie you missed it! Lykos is the liar here. How can you tell? Her lips are moving.

Anonymous said...

And Anon 10:32 probably thinks ADAs should always take the 5th when asked questions about evidence and whether evidence was hidden or not.

Sorry Anon 10:32, it takes proof to show lying and Oberg has been showing proof that Lykos has been lying.

Day 13 said...

"We are eager to show the public all the evidence in this case." - Patricia R. Lykos (2/1/12)

"The Harris County District Attorney’s Office has long been eager to share what we know with the public. Now that the grand jury’s proceedings have ended, we will be responding—vigorously.

In the days to come, our website—HarrisCountyDA.com—will feature a new section devoted to setting the record straight." (source: www.harriscountyda.com).


Ms. Lykos:

Happy Valentine's Day! We hope you are wearing your pink suit today - the one on your website looks great on you.

Hey, speaking of websites, today would be a great day to share the evidence with us.

Sincerely,

- the public

Anonymous said...

Around the BAT Van time, AC stopped answering the phone and was only accessible by email.

At the time, it was a total pain and I thought she was a diva. That was before I realized what a gift from God RP is.

She's not stupid. Obviously, someone needs to get the email. Find the email!

Anonymous said...

I wonder if the Rangers are hauling computers away from the CJC pursuant to a search warrant or if they were released voluntarily?

Anonymous said...

Just wait til the Grant funding investigation from the Senator's office hit the news...

Anonymous said...

What about how she is paying for the media people?

Anonymous said...

Anon 5:08

Please share about the grant funding you mentioned. Some of us have no clue

Anonymous said...

DAO applied for and got some Fed grants; the money was used for something unapproved. Austin is investigating.

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:41

Thank you. Amazing, does it ever stop?