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Posts Tagged ‘Court of Criminal Appeals’

Perry has a court date

Happy Halloween, Rick. Visiting Judge Bert Richardson of San Antonio on Monday set the appearance for Oct. 31. Richardson also gave special prosecutor Michael McCrum until Nov. 7 to respond to two motions to quash the case. Richardson had excused Perry from appearing in court Monday. The governor is traveling overseas this week, leading an […]

DeLay gets off

Sure is nice to have friends in high places. Siding with a decision made a year ago by a lower appeals court, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals on Wednesday refused to reinstate money-laundering convictions against former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay. In an 8-1 decision, the state’s highest criminal court backed a Texas […]

McCrum asks for help

Because many against one is not a fair fight. The special prosecutor in the case against Gov. Rick Perry is asking for some help. San Antonio lawyer Michael McCrum, who guided the case to last month’s indictment, filed a motion Friday asking a state court to fund a co-counsel. “Mr. Perry has filed several pleadings […]

The enduring mystery of Lawrence Meyers

People are still speculating about why the enigmatic CCA Judge switched parties. Lawrence “Larry” Meyers did something last year that no other politician in Texas has done in nearly two decades: He became a statewide Democratic officeholder. As Democrats gather in Dallas this week for their state convention, Meyers — a Court of Criminal Appeals […]

DeLay gets his day before the CCA

Looks like he might have had a pretty good day, too. Oral arguments in Tom DeLay’s decadelong legal fight with the Travis County District Attorney’s office heated up Wednesday as Republican judges on the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals questioned whether prosecutors could prove the former House majority leader illegally funneled corporate money to state […]

Today’s the day for Tom DeLay at the CCA

Apologies for the excessive alliteration. I got on a roll and couldn’t stop. DeLay’s appellate lawyer, Brian Wice of Houston, and Travis County prosecutor Holly Taylor will argue Wednesday before the state’s highest criminal court in Austin over whether the jury’s verdict should be reinstated or if DeLay will be exonerated. A victory by DeLay […]

On defining success

It depends on what your goals are. Suppose you were a Texas Democrat and a realist. You want your candidates to win in November and to break the spirit-killing string of losses that started after the statewide elections in 1994. But you have been scratching for reasons that this year will be different, from the […]

TPJ files amicus brief in DeLay appeal

It’s almost time for Tom DeLay to go to court again. A government-watchdog group on Tuesday petitioned the state’s highest criminal court to reinstate the money-laundering and conspiracy convictions of former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom Delay, moving to join a brewing legal fight before a scheduled June 18 court hearing in the case. DeLay, […]

CCA to review dismissal of DeLay conviction

The criminal justice system isn’t done with Tom DeLay just yet. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals on Wednesday agreed to review whether a lower court correctly decided last fall to toss out the prison sentence handed to former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay on money-laundering charges. The state’s highest court on criminal matters announced […]

How much will science advance in the courts?

It’s up to the CCA to decide. Texas’ highest criminal court will hear arguments Wednesday in a case that could affect how evolving scientific evidence is used in courtrooms across the state. For Neal H. Robbins, the high court’s decision will determine whether he gets another shot at arguing his innocence. In 1999, a jury […]

January finance reports for Democratic statewide candidates

With the exception of a stray missing report here and there, all of the January campaign finance reports for state office holders and seekers are up on the Texas Ethics Commission webpage. Here’s a brief look at the reports filed by Democratic candidates for statewide offices. I already have reports for the candidates in contested […]

What is the sound of one politician switching?

It depends. When Lawrence Meyers won a seat on the statewide Court of Criminal Appeals in 1992, he was the first Republican elected to the state’s highest criminal court. This month he made history again. After switching parties, Meyers, who had been a judge in Fort Worth, became the first Democrat to hold statewide office […]

Final filings: We have a statewide Democrat

Boy, I didn’t see this coming. Longtime Texas Court of Criminal Appeals Judge Lawrence “Larry” Meyers announced Monday that he is leaving the Republican Party to run as a Democrat for the Texas Supreme Court. Meyers, of Fort Worth, filed Monday on the last day of filing to seek Place 6 on the Supreme Court, […]

DeLay wants to sue

Whatever you say, dude. Former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, reveling in victory Thursday against Texas prosecutors in a money-laundering case, said his political career is over but he’s eager to return to the courthouse. If he can find a lawyer “with a backbone,” DeLay said, he’ll considering suing the Travis County district attorney for […]

CCA turnover

Nobody is running for re-election on the Court of Criminal Appeals. All three Texas Court of Criminal Appeals judges whose terms expire in 2014 — one-third of the nine-member panel — have elected not to seek another term, setting the stage for unusually high turnover on the state’s highest criminal court. “This is a lot […]

Keller accepts a plea deal on ethics charge

She gets off pretty lightly, if you ask me. Sharon Keller, the state’s top criminal court judge, has reached a deal to substantially reduce a record $100,000 fine levied by the Texas Ethics Commission for failing to fully disclose millions of dollars of real estate and income in financial statements. Under the settlement, released Friday, […]

Are two courts better than one?

Why exactly do we need two top courts in Texas? A proposal for the upcoming legislative session is resuscitating a debate that goes back to the writing of the Texas Constitution in 1876. The bill, authored by state Rep. Richard Peña Raymond, D-Laredo, would abolish the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, the state’s highest court […]

2012 election results

As I type this there are still a number of unsettled races in Texas, so things may change between now and tomorrow morning after we’ve all had an insufficient night’s sleep. But here’s how they stand at this time, and I will use my what I’ll be looking for post as a jumping off point. […]

What I’ll be looking for tonight

Just a reminder that I’ll be on KPFT tonight starting at 7 PM to talk about the elections. Here’s a preview of the things I’ll be looking for: 1. SD10 – Sen. Wendy Davis vs Mark Shelton: Easily the most important race on the ballot in Texas. Davis has been a progressive champion and a […]

Endorsement watch: The Statesman gets in the game

In addition to their Sunday endorsement of Paul Sadler, the Statesman made up for lost time last week by finally getting around to making endorsements in various races. Among their first was a nice recommendation of John Courage. Texas Senate, District 25 District 25, which stretches from South Austin to northern San Antonio and Bexar […]

Overview of the Keller-Hampton race

This story covers a lot of familiar ground, but it’s worth going over again. Three judges on Texas’ highest criminal court are seeking re-election in November, including Presiding Judge Sharon Keller, who’s been a lightning rod for controversy since her last test of voters in 2006. Elected to Texas’ Court of Criminal Appeals in 1994, […]

Endorsement watch: For Ann Johnson

I noted on Monday that the Chron listed Ann Johnson as one of its endorsed candidates. Yesterday they wrote the endorsement editorial to go along with that. The tea party turnout of 2010 gave Republican candidate Sarah Davis the narrow victory she needed to win in District 134, a prosperous swing district that covers areas […]

Endorsement watch: Four for four

The Express-News gets on the Keith Hampton bus. When one of Texas Court of Criminal Appeals Presiding Judge Sharon Keller’s Republican colleagues said she had made the court a “national laughingstock,” he was being generous. Keller’s controversial judicial actions are no laughing matter. And that’s why we urge Texans to cast ballots in the general […]

Endorsement watch: The Chron for Hampton

The Chron joins the DMN and the Star-Telegram in endorsing Keith Hampton for the Court of Criminal Appeals. We highly recommend that voters cast their ballots instead for Democratic challenger Keith Hampton. This endorsement is not merely a rejection of the incumbent judge’s poor track record, but enthusiastic support for Hampton’s impressive history of working […]

DeLay argues his case before the appeals court panel

It’s an old, familiar argument. Former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay should not go to prison on money-laundering charges because the 2002 campaign transaction involved a $190,000 check and not cash, his lawyer argued before the Third Court of Appeals Wednesday. Houston lawyer Brian Wice said the Legislature later changed the money-laundering statute to […]

Hampton going after Keller

I wish him the best of luck. The ethics behind Court of Criminal Appeals Presiding Judge Sharon Keller’s decision to shut the doors on a death penalty appeal are resurfacing as her opponent launches a contentious campaign against her. Democratic defense lawyer Keith Hampton is striking out at Keller, a Dallas resident who’s held the […]

Bench slaps come in threes

In addition to the tongue lashing they got from the DC Court in the voter ID preclearance trial, the Greg Abbott gang took fire from judges in two other cases recently. Trail Blazers has the highlights. First, some incredulity from the Court of Criminal Appeals: Last Wednesday, Solicitor General Jonathan Mitchell tried to convince the […]

Re-Filing deadline roundup

The re-filing deadline was Friday, and as expected there was a flurry of activity on the final day. I’m going to do a news roundup to highlight what went on and who’s now running for what. You can find a list of filings that the Texas Democratic Party is aware of here, but bear in […]

Sanchez ends his Senate campaign

This news broke late Friday. Leading Democratic U.S. senatorial candidate Ricardo Sanchez announced Friday that he’s ending his campaign to replace retiring Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison. In a statement issued by his campaign to supporters, Sanchez said anemic fundraising and the loss of his house to a fire had led him to conclude that a […]

Can someone beat Sharon Keller this time?

Grits notes that CCA Presiding Judge Sharon Keller has opponents in March and in November – her colleague Larry Meyers for the former, and 2010 Dem CCA candidate Keith Hampton for the latter – and wonders if either of them can defeat Texas’ worst judge. Judge Meyers probably faces shorter odds than Hampton at unseating […]

“Checks aren’t cash” back before 3rd Court of Appeals

Sometimes when you least expect it, Tom DeLay pops up in the news. It would defy common sense to reverse the three-year prison sentence of former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay because his money-laundering case involved a check instead of cash, Travis County prosecutors are arguing. Their argument comes in a legal brief to […]

Gallego to run for CD23 and other updates

State Rep. Pete Gallego has decided to run for Congress in CD23. Gallego first won election to the Texas House in 1990 and has chaired various committees and also been part of the Democratic leadership, doing time as head of the House Democratic and the Mexican American Legislative Caucuses. That’s made him known to state […]

DeLay files appeal of his conviction

The man has been a boon for the defense bar, I’ll say that much for him. Tom DeLay’s appellate lawyer tapped a movie musical and Shakespeare in a wide-ranging appeal that argues the former U.S. House majority leader was wrongly convicted of conspiring to launder corporate dollars into campaign donations. In 2002, DeLay’s political committee […]

Meyers to challenge Keller in GOP primary

There will be a little hot judge on judge action in next March’s Republican primary. Court of Criminal Appeals Judge Lawrence “Larry” Meyers has told colleagues that he will challenge fellow jurist Sharon Keller in the Republican primary for the court’s presiding judge position. Keller famously fought and ultimately won a legal battle against the […]