Showing posts from July, 2009

Free CLE Today - Pt. 2

The make up session for the free CLE that was cancelled back in April will be held today on the 20th Floor of the CJC from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. It is hosted by HCCLA and the topic is Balancing Life and the Practice. No reservations are necessary -- just show up.

Good News from the 5th Circuit

I was very happy to hear the good news today that Scott Durfee was exonerated by the 5 th Circuit for allegations of wrong-doing during the Chuck Rosenthal fiasco of 2007-2008. Out of all of the Assistant District Attorneys that had to endure the embarrassment and hardships caused by Rosenthal after the Ibarra Brothers scandal, few can say that they had it as bad as Scott. From his personal e-mails to his family being aired on Channel 11 to being sanctioned by Judge Hoyt, Scott endured a lot over the past two years that he shouldn't have had to. As Pat McCann pointed out when Scott was originally sanctioned, Scott was in the unenviable position of his "client" ( Rosenthal ) actually being his employer, as well. And Scott suffered for Chuck's actions. Throughout it all, he maintained himself with composure and grace, and as much cheerfulness as he could possibly muster. We all watched as he lost a dramatic amount of weight due to the stress he was going throug

A Meeting Today

Today's going to be a big day for Lykos and the Davidians, as Roger Bridgwater will actually face the Defense Bar and talk to them about the new Pre-Trial Diversion Program for DWI first offenders. The show is taking place at noon on the 7th Floor of the CJC, and when I say "show", I mean it. Expect Roger to finally be getting some tough questions that needed to be asked before they decided to "accidentally" announce their program during a press conference. Oh, and this time, Rog, you can't complain to the Disciplinary Committee on anybody for questioning you for a dumb plan. Some of the questions that I have that are immediately coming to mind are: 1. What are you going to do when a County Court judge doesn't want to follow your policy and won't allow the case to be reset for a year? 2. Who is going to decide what infractions are worthy of getting a Defendant's Pre-Trial diversion yanked? 3. Are there going to be any lesser sanctions for lesse

Another Loss for the Office

Prosecutor and new Mom, Carvana Cloud turned in her letter of resignation this morning. Given the way Pat Lykos and the Gang treated her during the past several months , it is no surprise that she decided to leave a place where she was no longer appreciated. Given that Lykos campaigned on diversity, common sense would have seemed to dictate that she and her minions should do everything in their power to have talked Carvana into staying. Unfortunately, common sense isn't something the Office possesses any longer. I wish Carvana my sincere congratulations -- first (and most importantly) on the New Baby! But second on escaping an office that is going down the tubes and never appreciated all you did for it. Best of luck, Carvana !

Prosecutorial Quote of the Day

From an Anonymous Prosecutor: "Man, I've got to set a damn Ecstasy case for trial today. I don't think I'll get much time on it. It's not like cocaine. I mean, what's he [the defendant] going to do? Lick somebody to death?"

Blogging in a Lykos World

For those of you all in and around the CJC , the obvious topic of the past week has been the rise and fall of the blog known as Life After Esquire ( LAE ), written by a female Baby Prosecutor. The blog itself had been around for quite awhile, and I had been reading it for several months. In my opinion it was excellent writing and more importantly, very valuable writing. To some degree, it was like The Wonder Years from the perspective of a rookie prosecutor, and I enjoyed reading it immensely. She did a great job with showing prosecutors (especially young ones) as the bright-eyed and eager public servants that they are. And all was well with it until last week when she did a little too much over sharing about something that happened at Baby Prosecutor's school and Mark Bennett brought it screamingly to everyone's attention. Based on her post, she has been ridiculed on Bennett's blog, in the Houston Press , and she was disciplined. Obviously, she scrapped her blog immedi

Adios, Arthur

It is with great sadness that I must report that the most excellent blog Saturday Night and Monday Morning hosted by Arthur Seaton has apparently been scrapped. The rumors that Arthur and his life long companion, Rage Judicata have eloped are unconfirmed as of yet.

Craig Washington

The trial for Craig Washington is scheduled to begin today in the 208 th District Court. My knowledge of the facts of that case are limited to only what I've read in the newspaper, so I don't really have much to add to that particular conversation (other than to say it does sound somewhat similar to the Joe Horn case ). But I did want to say something about Craig. When I first started working in Harris County, I knew who Craig Washington was. He had defended a man back in the 1970s/1980s named Eroy Brown who was accused of Capital Murder in the deaths of a prison warden and a prison guard. It just so happened that one of the victims in the case was the (step) grandfather of my best friend. My understanding when I was growing up was that there had been a couple of hung juries on the case before Eroy Brown had been found not guilty. Obviously, that wasn't something that had sat well with my best friend's family, but he and I were way too young to understand what

A New First Assistant

Okay, I'm going to admit to the title of this being somewhat misleading (although accurate). You can rest assured that Harris County still has the same First Assistant (at least in title) and that Jim Leitner's huevos are still resting comfortably in Pat Lykos ' purse. However, the Galveston County District Attorney's Office apparently has a new First Assistant . . . Donna Goode . One of the increasingly cliched statements I keep hearing on this blog is "Pat Lykos vowed to create the best District Attorney's Office in the Nation, and she has . . . just in another county." Both Galveston and Montgomery County have reaped the incredible benefit of dedicated public servants who have joined them when the Gang Who Couldn't Shoot Straight became too unbearable to work for. I think it is worth pointing out that Donna Goode more than had her retirement points in and could very easily have settled into a well deserved retirement, but she didn't. There

Institutional Memory

I was having a conversation at the elevator bank today with my friend and fellow defense attorney, Todd Bennett, and our conversation turned to talking about Todd's father, Bob Bennett, who is a retired attorney. Back in the late 60s/early 70s, Todd's dad had been involved in one of Houston's most notorious murder cases that was detailed in Thomas Thompson's book Blood and Money . (NOTE: I'm not giving the details of the book, because I'm hoping you'll go actually read it yourself. It's a great book.) But anyway, what Todd and I were talking about was the sad fact that a lot of lawyers around the CJC sometimes pass through that building and deal with prosecutors, defense attorneys, and judges without ever realizing some of the amazing things these members of the Bar have done or been involved in. As time passes, the newer attorneys lose the institutional memory of some of the "Old Dogs" and the fascinating cases that they tried. I thin

Me and My Blog

Last year when I was still relatively new at this blogging thing, I went several days without doing a new post. I began the next one I did by apologizing for having gone so long without writing, to which a sarcastic (yet funny) commenter wrote in something to the effect that they found it amusing when a blogger apologized for actually not writing for awhile (as if the entire world was waiting on the next words of wisdom to come from said blogger). It made me laugh, because it was true, and I always think of that guy's commentary whenever I've gone a bit without writing. But then I get a comment like the one at 5:13 a.m. this morning on my last post talking about "When Blogs Go Blank" and I'm not sure what to make of it. I can't tell if they are taunting me for not having written in a while or just encouraging me to write something new. Either way, I can assure you that the Old Life at the CJC blog has not gone completely blank and I don't have any pl