Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Boss Ogg's Slate

 


In a meeting with the judges a year or so ago, Harris County District Attorney's Office First Assistant David Mitcham expressed his frustration with the judges and bond reform, giving them a warning that those who didn't share District Attorney Kim Ogg's "vision" would face "consequences."   Those who were present for the meeting (at least the ones that I spoke with) indicated that the implication was that the Office intended to field candidates to run against those judges who weren't bending to the District Attorney's will.  At least, that's how they interpreted Mitcham's words.

Now that the filing deadline has passed, it is abundantly clear that Mitcham's veiled threat was not an empty one as a significant number almost every of judicial races now has a prosecutorial candidate running as either a Democrat or Republican.  Some are great candidates.  Others . . . not so much.  A few are royal disasters, but we will talk about that more in-depth in a future post.

I thought it was interesting to see that the Republicans filled out an entire slate (as opposed to the past election or so).  Perhaps with Donald Trump out of the White House, they assume the Party will be more palatable.  The gubernatorial battle has never been one that generated tremendous turnout in Texas, and the battle of Abbott vs. O'Rourke probably won't be anywhere near as exciting as when O'Rourke ran against Ted Cruz four years ago.  They must have dug deep to find some of these candidates, however.  There are quite a few of them that I've never heard of (which is unusual).

Not to mention that Republican Candidates (with hefty donations from some big names affiliated with CrimeStoppers) have been doing a fantastic (and highly misleading) job of pointing out that this current crop of Democratic Judges are just a clear and present danger to world peace since they follow the Constitution and set bonds for criminals.   Ogg and her PR machine have been giving a lot of oxygen to those misleading allegations to the degree that one would be pretty hard-pressed to argue that Ogg is really anything other than a Democrat in Name Only.

So, without further ado, here are the candidates for the Criminal Judicial Races on the ballot in November 2022.  

(NOTE:  This list is based on looking at the Secretary of State website, the Harris County Democratic Party website, and the Harris County Republican Party website, as well as personal knowledge.  If there are any additions, deletions or modifications, please let me know.)

180th District Court
DEM:
    Judge DaSean Jones (Incumbent)
REP:
    Tami C. Pierce

182nd District Court
DEM:
    Judge Danny Lacayo (Incumbent)
REP:
    Robert H. Jackson (an Investigator for the District Attorney's Office)

183rd District Court
DEM:
    Judge Chuck Silverman (Incumbent)
    Gemayel Haynes
REP:
    Kristin Guiney (former Judge)

184th District Court
DEM:  
    Judge Abigail Anastasio (Incumbent)
    Katherine "Kat" Thomas (Prosecutor)
REP:
    Lori DeAngelo

185th District Court
DEM:
    Judge Jason Luong (Incumbent)
    Katie Ferrell 
    Andrea "Andy" Beall (Prosecutor)
REP:
    Chris Carmona

208th District Court
DEM:
    Judge Greg Glass (Incumbent)
    Beverly Armstrong
    Kim McTorry
REP:
    Heather Hudson (Prosecutor)

209th District Court
DEM:
    Judge Brian Warren (Incumbent)
REP:
    Kevin Fulton

228th District Court
DEM:
    Judge Frank Aguillar (Incumbent)
    Sam Milledge, II
REP:
    Andy Taylor

230th District Court
DEM:
    Judge Chris Morton (Incumbent)
    Joseph Sanchez (Prosecutor)
REP:
    Brad Hart (former Judge)

232nd District Court
DEM:
    Judge Josh Hill (Incumbent)
REP:
    Joshua Normand

248th District Court
DEM:
    Judge Hilary Unger (Incumbent)
    Linda Mazzagatti (Prosecutor)
REP:
    Julian Ramirez

262nd District Court
DEM:  
    Judge Lori Gray (Incumbent)
REP:
    Tonya McLaughlin

263rd District Court
DEM:
    Judge Amy Martin (Incumbent)
    Melissa Morris
REP:
    Amber Cox (Prosecutor)

482nd District Court
DEM:
    Veronica Nelson
    Alycia Harvey (Prosecutor)
    Sherlene Cruz
REP:
    Judge Maritza Antu (technically not an incumbent since she was appointed to the Bench)

County Court at Law # 1
DEM:
    Judge Alex Salgado (Incumbent)
REP:
    Nathan Moss (Prosecutor)

County Court at Law # 2
DEM:
    Judge Ronnisha Bowman (Incumbent)    
    Janell Robles 
REP:
    Paula Goodhart (former Judge)

County Court at Law # 3
DEM:  No Incumbent -- Judge Erika Hughes took a Federal appointment earlier this year
    Staci Biggar
    Porscha Brown
    Lorenzo Williams
REP:
    Leslie Johnson

County Court at Law # 4
DEM:
    Judge Shannon Baldwin (Incumbent)
REP:
    Zachary Gibson (Prosecutor)

County Court at Law # 5
DEM:
    Judge David Fleicher (Incumbent)
    Carlos Aguayo (Prosecutor)
REP:
    Elizabeth Buss (Prosecutor)

County Court at Law # 6
DEM:
    Judge Kelley Andrews (Incumbent)
    Selina Alaniz
REP:
    Mark Montgomery

County Court at Law # 7
DEM:
    Judge Andrew Wright (Incumbent)
    Mauricio Vazquez 
REP:
    Mike Monks

County Court at Law # 8
DEM:
    Judge Franklin Bynum (Incumbent)
    Erika Ramirez (Prosecutor)
REP:
    Mark Goldberg (Prosecutor.  Sort of.  Really more of Ogg's PR guy who sometimes moonlights as a prosecutor in an actual court)

County Court at Law # 9
DEM:
    Judge Toria Finch (Incumbent)
REP:
    Sartaj Bal

County Court at Law # 10
DEM:  No Incumbent --  Judge Lee Harper Wilson did not seek re-election.
    Juanita Jackson
    Thuy Le
REP:
    Dan Spjut (former Judge)

County Court at Law # 11
DEM:
    Judge Sedrick Walker (Incumbent)
REP:
    Dan Simons

County Court at Law # 12
DEM:
    Judge Genesis Draper (Incumbent)
REP:
    Matt Dexter

County Court at Law # 13
DEM:
    Judge Raul Rodriguez (Incumbent)
REP:
    Lance Long

County Court at Law # 14
DEM:
    Judge David Singer (Incumbent)
    Je'Rell Rogers (Prosecutor)
REP:
    Jessica Needham Padilla

County Court at Law # 15
DEM:
    Judge Tonya Jones (Incumbent)
REP:
    Xavier Alfaro

313th District Court (Juvenile)
DEM:
    Judge Natalia Oakes (Incumbent)
    Glenda Duru
REP:
    Julie A. Ketterman
    Rachel Leal-Hudson

314th District Court (Juvenile)
DEM:
    Judge Michelle Moore (Incumbent)
REP:
    Cindy Hide

315th District Court (Juvenile)
DEM:
    Judge Leah Shapiro (Incumbent)
    Iesha Champs
REP:
    Marie Valeria Brock

Sunday, December 5, 2021

If Being a Football Coach was Like Being a Defense Attorney-Part 2: Talking to the Ref

REF:  Okay, so it is my understanding that one of your players wanted to talk to me, Coach?

COACH (Sighing Heavily):  Yes, Ref.   Against my advice.

REF:  Okay.  To avoid the appearance of impropriety, I've asked Chiefs' Coach Reid to join us.

PLAYER:  Good!  I want to talk to him, too.

COACH:  No, you don't.

PLAYER:  See what I'm dealing with here, Ref?

REF:  What seems to be the problem?

PLAYER:  So, basically, I want to win the game.

REF:  That's good.  Everyone should want to win their game.

PLAYER:  Yeah, but it's like Coach isn't even trying to help us.

REF:  What's going on?

PLAYER:  Well, he's saying that we're playing the Chiefs and that Chiefs are really good.

REF:  Well, obviously, as Referee, I don't know anything about how the game will turn out, but I do know that the Chiefs usually do play pretty well at home.

COACH:  That's what I was trying to tell him, Ref.

PLAYER:  I keep trying to tell him that I want to win and all he does is keep going on and on about "Patrick Mahomes is really good" and "You don't have a chance."

COACH:  I never said we didn't have a chance!

REF:  Sir, I've known your Coach for a very long time.  I've seen him win some tough games and I've seen him lose some tough games, but he does always try very hard to help his team win.

PLAYER:  I'm just not seeing it, Ref.  He didn't even ask Coach Reid if he would let us win.

REF:  Let you win?

COACH REID:  Yeah, I'm not going to do that.

PLAYER STARES AT COACH REID, INCREDULOUS.

PLAYER:  You let the Titans win.

COACH REID:  That was a tough game, but we did not just let them win.

PLAYER:  You let the Ravens win.

COACH REID:  We did not "let" the Ravens win.

PLAYER:  Look, I just to win for my family.  I've got a home that I need to make the mortgage on.  My mom is going to be watching the game.  My kids are coming.  I just need to win.

COACH:  We are going to try to win!  We have several things to work with.

PLAYER:  Can you guarantee me that we're going to win?

REF, COACH & COACH REID (in unison):  NO.

PLAYER:  Ref, can YOU make us win?  Maybe, tell Coach Reid that we have to win?

REF:  I'm not going to do that.  I'm the Referee.  I'm just here to make sure it is a fair game.

PLAYER:  I've been doing everything I can to make us win.  I've been working out.  I've been running . . .

REF:  That's good.

PLAYER: . . . I've been taking some performance-enhancing medicine . . . 

REF:  Wait, what?

COACH (hitting himself in the head with a clipboard repeatedly):  And THIS is why I told you that we should not be talking to the Ref.

PLAYER:  Why not? It will help.

COACH REID:  You've been using steroids?

PLAYER:  Why are you writing that down on your clipboard?

COACH REID: I'm meeting with the Commissioner later.

PLAYER:  I want to meet with the Commissioner too!

COACH REID:  Oh, I have a feeling you will be meeting with him soon enough.

PLAYER:  Anyways, Ref, my ankle is hurt and I'm not going to be able to keep up with Tyreek Hill.  I've asked my Coach to at least file a request with the League to suppress Tyreek.

COACH:  There are no grounds to suppress Tyreek Hill.

PLAYER:  Did you file a request with the League to allow us to win?

COACH:  There is no such thing.  

PLAYER:  Yeah right.

REF:  Your coach is right, sir.

PLAYER:  That's not what my friend D-Hop from the Cardinals told me and he won his game.

COACH:  DeAndre Hopkins is a much stronger player than you are.  It's a different set of circumstances.

PLAYER:  Do you see him being so disrespectful to me?

REF:  I have no comment.

PLAYER:  I have asked Coach to fire himself.

COACH:  I'm not going to fire myself.  I'm completely capable of coaching the team.

PLAYER:  Ref, can you make Bill Belichick my coach?  He's a good coach.

COACH:  I'M A GOOD COACH!

REF:  I cannot appoint Bill Belichick to be your coach.  Can you afford him on your own?

PLAYER:  My teammates are trying to get the money together . . . 

COACH:  Please let me know the second you have enough money for Coach Belichick.

PLAYER:  Can I just coach myself? I drew up some of my own plays that are going to help us win. 

REF:  You want to coach yourself?

PLAYER:  It's better than this Coach who thinks we already lost.

COACH:  I never said we already lost.

PLAYER:  So, look, I drew up the play on this piece of paper. (SHOWS PAPER TO REF, COACH, & COACH REID)

COACH REID:  Why do the Chiefs only have three defensive players in this drawing?

PLAYER:  Yeah, I'm going to need y'all to only play three players so we can score easier.

COACH REID:  We are not going to do that.

PLAYER:  Yeah, y'all are dirty.  I know.  No wonder y'all win so much.

COACH REID:  We aren't dirty.  Those are the rules.

PLAYER:  Not if you aren't trying to let us win.

COACH REID:  We are definitely NOT trying to let you win.

PLAYER:  That's not my only plan.  We know it is going to rain at Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday, so we were talking about deflating the balls a little bit to help us catch them better.

COACH REID:  Oh really?

COACH:  For the love of God, please stop talking.

PLAYER:  Let me talk to these men!

REF:  I think at this point, you should probably listen to your coach and stop talking.

PLAYER:  So, we're done here?

COACH:  I'm pretty sure you are done here.

Friday, December 3, 2021

If Being a Football Coach Was Like Being a Defense Attorney

COACH:  Alright team, this week, we are playing the Chiefs . . . 

PLAYER:  So, you're trying to tell us that we just need to give up.

COACH:  Um, no.  I'm just trying to start a conversation about what to expect as we head into this weekend.  So, anyway, their quarterback is obviously Patrick Mahomes and he's a very talented . . . 

PLAYER:  So, you're trying to say that we don't have a quarterback?!

COACH:  I, uh, don't believe I said that.  All I'm saying is that we all need to be aware that there are certain strengths to their team that need to be considered.  I know that we are the Houston Texans and we have a terrible record but . . .

PLAYER:  We have a terrible record because no one ever thought about letting us win.  

COACH:  Let you win?

PLAYER:  Man, we've had eight games and not one time did the other team offer to let us win.

COACH:  I mean, that's not really how it works . . . 

PLAYER:  The Ravens beat them.  I don't see why we don't get to beat them.

COACH:  Well, I would point out that the Ravens have a different set of players than we do and may have different strengths . . .

PLAYER:  So you are saying that we have no chance.

COACH:  I don't think that at any point I have said that we have no chance.  I'm just saying that when you are facing a team, whether they are good or bad, you have to prepare and be ready for what may happen . . . 

PLAYER:  You are NOT working for us.

COACH:  How am I not working for you?  All I've done is tell you who we are facing!

PLAYER:  Fine.  Go ahead.

COACH:  Okay. Thank you.  So, as I was saying, they have a very talented quarterback in Patrick Mahomes and he has two excellent targets in Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill.  We're going to be running a lot more Dime formations on . . . 

PLAYER:  You sound like you are working for the Chiefs.

COACH:  I'm trying to talk to you about our defense!  How is that working for the Chiefs?!

PLAYER:  What is it, Coach?  Are you a Chief or are you a Texan?

COACH:  I'm a Texan!  Why is this even a question?

PLAYER:  Did you ask the Chiefs about letting us win?

COACH:  They aren't going to let us win.

PLAYER:  Did you ask them?

COACH:  I've been a coach for 22 years and never once has the other team just agreed to let us win.

PLAYER:  How many times did you ask?

COACH:  Um, well, I've never asked.

PLAYER:  Exactly.  You aren't even trying to work for us.

COACH:  I'm trying to work with you right now!  We need to talk about how to meet the challenge of facing off against the Chiefs.  The first thing we need to do is decide . . .

PLAYER:  I'm getting a free world coach.

COACH:  What does that even mean?

PLAYER:  My friend plays for the Titans.  They beat the Chiefs and people said they were going to lose.

COACH:  That's a great point, and I think that we can do the same!  We just need to . . .

PLAYER:  Get the Titans coach?

COACH:  Well, no, I was going to say rise to the occasions like the Titans did.  We can do this if you will just hear me out and we make a plan.

SILENCE

PLAYER:  Okay.  What's your plan?

COACH:  Thank you.  So, as I was saying Mahomes is really dangerous when he connects with Hill and . . .

PLAYER:  SEE WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT?!?!?!  I'm calling Jerry Jones.

COACH:  Jerry Jones?  The Cowboys owner?  What does he have to do with this?

PLAYER:  We aren't going to play for you against the Chiefs.

COACH:  Well, our game date is set for Sunday, so you are going to have to.

PLAYER:  Nope.

COACH:  Then we will forfeit.

PLAYER:  No we won't.

COACH:  Then we're playing!

PLAYER:  Nope.

COACH:  We have to do one or the other.

PLAYER:  Nope.  I'm calling Jerry Jones.

COACH:  Jerry Jones is not going to help you.  He has nothing to do with either us or the Chiefs.

PLAYER:  I want to talk to the ref.

COACH:  You want to talk to the referee?

PLAYER:  Yeah.  

COACH:  Why do you want to talk to the referee?

PLAYER:  Because this is some bullshit.  You aren't even trying.

COACH:  The game hasn't even started yet!

PLAYER:  Yeah, but I want the ref to give me a new coach.

COACH:  The ref is not going to give you a new coach.

PLAYER:  Did you ask him?

COACH:  Well, no.

PLAYER:  Then how do you even know?

COACH:  The referee is just going to tell you that you are free to ask to be traded and find another team on your own, but he isn't just going to give you a new coach.

PLAYER:  We'll see.