Saturday, April 29, 2017

Bail - Bond



I haven't left my bomb shelter since Eisenhower.  Did I miss anything?

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Of course you thought it would be easy....because you are an idiot.


I'd like to help people more.  What gets in my way is that I don't like any very much. (Things even out though, as I've found the feeling is mutual).

When Trump learns something for the first time he likes to call 100 Senators to the White House to brag about his new knowledge and tell them what they already knew.  It would be  kinda cute if he was in his 20's and wasn't President.

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A lot of Trump's  followers don't.


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BREAKING NEWS

Federal judge rules on Harris County cash bail system

A federal judge in Houston denounced Harris County's cash bail system on Friday and issued a temporary ruling that may allow for the release of more inmates.
The ruling comes amid an ongoing legal battle over whether the county's money bail system unfairly detains impoverished people. 
Read more 

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Trump Tax Plan Would Shift Trillions From U.S. Coffers to the Richest

By JULIE HIRSCHFELD DAVIS and PATRICIA COHEN

The vast majority of benefits would go to the highest earners and largest holders of wealth, analysts said, setting up a battle over the government's strained resources.

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House Criminal Jurisprudence
On Monday, April 24, the House Criminal Jurisprudence Committee considered a full agenda of bills. All bills were heard and left pending, including:

  • HB 2200 by Hinojosa (D-Austin) relating to the medical use of marihuana,
  • HB 2315 by Landgraf (R-Odessa) relating to establishing a protective order registry and the duties of courts in regard to the registry,
  • HB 2450 by Koop (R-Dallas) relating to a warrant authorizing the search of a cellular telephone or other wireless communications device, and
  • HB 2586 by Thompson (D-Houston) relating to the electronic filing of bail bonds.
Click here to listen to the archived committee broadcast.
The next committee meeting is scheduled for Monday, May 1. Click here for the complete list of scheduled bills.
House Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence
The House Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence Committee heard a variety of bills on Tuesday, April 25, and held a formal meeting on Thursday, April 27.
Click here to listen to an archived committee broadcast of the April 25 hearing.
Several previously considered bills were voted favorably from the committee this week, including:

  • HB 2221 by Schofield (R-Katy) relating to a limitation on the amount of attorney’s fees awarded in a case assigned to a special three-judge district court,
  • HB 2469 by Davis (R-West University Place) relating to the establishment of an electronic database for settlement agreements for certain suits involving minors or incapacitated persons,
  • HB 3356 by Tracy King (D-Uvalde) relating to privacy of certain structured settlement information,
  • HB 3627 by Shaheen (R-Plano) relating to compliance with ethical and statutory requirements by out-of-state attorneys providing legal services in this state,
  • HB 3785 by Capriglione (R-Southlake) relating to associate judges and court reporters for certain family law cases and proceedings,
  • HB 3971 by Schofield (R-Katy) relating to the method of calculating the salary of state judges,
  • HJR 10 by Smithee (R-Amarillo) proposing a constitutional amendment changing the eligibility requirements for and the terms of office of certain judicial offices,
  • SB 42 by Zaffirini (D-Laredo) relating to the security of courts and judges in the state,
  • SB 259 by Huffines (R-Dallas) relating to jury summons questionnaires, and
  • SB 303 by Watson (D-Austin) relating to the continuation and functions of the Board of Law Examiners. 
The next meeting of the committee is scheduled for Tuesday, May 2. Click here to view the agenda. 
Senate Criminal Justice
The Senate Committee on Criminal Justice met on Tuesday, April 25. Click here to view the agenda. Among the bills considered and voted favorably was SB 527 by Birdwell (R-Granbury) relating to a defendant’s payment of costs associated with court-appointed counsel. SB 1577 by Perry (R-Lubbock), relating to measures to prevent wrongful convictions, was one of the bills considered and left pending. 
The committee agenda for next week was not posted in time for inclusion in the Friday Update. Current information on upcoming meetings for this committee can be found here.
Senate State Affairs
The Senate Committee on State Affairs met on Monday, April 24.  Among the bills considered and voted favorably from the committee were:

  • SB 1893 by Birdwell (R-Granbury) relating to the administrative judicial regions in the state,
  • SB 1945 by Hughes (R-Mineola) relating to the Texas Uniform Trade Secrets Act, and
  • SJR 6 by Zaffirini (D-Laredo) proposing a constitutional amendment authorizing the legislature to require a court to provide notice to the attorney general of a challenge to the constitutionality of a state statute and authorizing the legislature to prescribe a waiting period before the court may enter a judgment holding the statute unconstitutional.
The committee also met on Thursday, April 27, and heard a variety of bills, including SB 1938, relating to the method of calculating the salary of state judges, and SB 1394, relating to the calculation of longevity pay for state judges and justices, both by Hughes (R-Mineola). Both bills were left pending.
Click here to listen to the archived broadcasts.
The next meeting of the committee is scheduled for Monday, May 1. Click here for the list of scheduled bills.
Of Interest

  • HB 1774 by Greg Bonnen (R-Friendswood), relating to actions on and liability associated with certain insurance claims, is set on the House Calendar for May 4.
  • SB 1763 by Zaffirini (D-Laredo), relating to the procedures of the State Commission on Judicial Conduct, passed the Senate on Wednesday, April 26.
  • SB 1911 by Zaffirini (D-Laredo), relating to posting notice of self-help resources on the Internet website of a state court and in the office of the court clerk, passed the Senate on Wednesday, April 26.
  • SB 2053 by West (D-Dallas), relating to the distribution of the consolidated court cost, passed the Senate on Thursday, April 27. 

2017-2018 Budget
On Monday, April 24, the Conference Committee on SB 1 met for an organizational meeting. The 10- member committee will work to reconcile the differences between the House and Senate versions of the budget bill. The Legislative Budget Board was present at the meeting to outline the differences between the two versions. 
The conferees appointed by the House are: John Zerwas (R-Richmond), Chair; Trent Ashby (R-Lufkin); Sarah Davis (R-Harris); Larry Gonzales (R-Round Rock); and Oscar Longoria (D-Mission). The Senate conferees for SB 1 are Jane Nelson (R-Flower Mound), Chair; Juan Hinojosa (D-McAllen); Joan Huffman (R-Houston); Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham); and Charles Schwertner (R-Georgetown). Representative Longoria and Senator Huffman were appointed as leads on Article IV, the judiciary portion of the budget.   
Additional information about the budget is available on the Legislative Budget Board’s website.
State Bar Legislative Program
The following bills, included in the State Bar’s 2017 legislative program, changed status this week: 
Construction Law:

  • HB 1844 by Workman (R-Austin), relating to choice of law and venue for certain construction contracts, was considered and left pending in the House Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence Committee on Tuesday, April 25.
  • SB 807 by Creighton (R-Conroe), relating to choice of law and venue for certain construction contracts, was voted favorably from the Senate State Affairs Committee on Tuesday, April 25.
 Family Law:

  • HB 1480 by Thompson (D-Houston), relating to a writ of mandamus by a court of appeals against an associate judge in certain cases, was voted favorably from the House Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence Committee on Tuesday, April 25.
  • HB 1495 by Thompson (D-Houston), relating to the rendition of certain temporary orders during the pendency of a suit for modification of an order that provides for the conservatorship, support, or possession of or access to a child, is scheduled to be heard in the Senate State Affairs Committee on Monday, May 1.
  • HB 1617 by Lucio (D-Brownsville), relating to procedures in a suit for dissolution of a marriage or a suit affecting the parent-child relationship, was voted favorably from the House Juvenile Justice and Family Issues Committee on Thursday, April 27.
  • SB 1237 by Rodriguez (D-El Paso), relating to procedures in a suit for dissolution of a marriage or a suit affecting the parent-child relationship, was voted favorably from the Senate State Affairs Committee on Monday, April 24. 
Poverty Law 

  • HB 1020 by Smithee (R-Amarillo), relating to volunteer practice by an inactive member of the State Bar of Texas, is scheduled to be heard in the Senate State Affairs Committee on Monday, May 1.
Real Estate, Probate and Trust Law:

  • HB 995 by Wray (R-Waxahachie), relating to the form and revocation of medical powers of attorney, was voted favorably from the House Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence Committee on Thursday, April 27.
  • HB 1787 by Wray (R-Waxahachie), relating to the execution of a declaration for mental health treatment, is set on the House calendar for May 1.
  • HB 1974 by Wray (R-Waxahachie), relating to durable powers of attorney, was voted favorably from the House Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence on Thursday, April 27.
  • HB 2158 by Parker (R-Flower Mound), relating to the adoption of the Texas Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act, was voted favorably from the House Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence Committee on Thursday, April 27.
  • HB 2271 by Wray (R-Waxahachie), relating to decedents’ estates and certain posthumous gifts, passed the House on Thursday, April 27.
  • SB 617 by Rodriguez (D-El Paso), relating to trusts, passed the Senate on Tuesday, April 25.
  • SB 926 by Rodriguez (D-El Paso), relating to durable powers of attorney, was voted favorably from the Senate State Affairs Committee on Monday, April 24.
State Bar
  • HB 3199 by Smithee (R-Amarillo), relating to the composition of the board of directors of the State Bar of Texas, is scheduled to be heard in the House Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence Committee on Tuesday, May 2.
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At a 1952 retrial in Ocala, Fla., Walter Irvin, center, was once again convicted of rape and sentenced to death. He is surrounded here by the lawyers, from left, Alex Akerman, Thurgood Marshall, Paul Perkins and Jack Greenberg.
Florida Apologizes for 'Gross Injustices' to Four Black Men, Decades Later

By JACEY FORTIN

The so-called Groveland Four were convicted of raping a white woman in 1949. This week, the state apologized for its role.

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Richard 'Racehorse' Haynes



Richard "Racehorse" Haynes
Photo by Scott Pasfield
There was a time when Richard “Race­horse” Haynes had his clients thank judges and juries at the end of their trials. But back-to-back cases in the 1970s changed his mind about that.
First, a Texas jury had just found his client not guilty on all counts, when Haynes told the court his client had something to say.
“Ladies and gentlemen, I want to thank each and every one of you,” the client stated. “And I promise you that I will never, ever do it again.”
A few weeks later, another Haynes client was acquitted. Again, the defendant thanked the judge and jury, only to be interrupted by the judge.
“Don’t thank me, you little turd,” the judge said. “You and I both know you’re guilty.”
Living and learning, says Haynes, is the key to being a good trial lawyer. If you don’t try something, you will never know if it would have worked. And Haynes admits he’s tried a lot of things.
“If you go in for heart surgery,” he says, “you want a surgeon who has done it a few times before.”
Indeed, Haynes is the master of courtroom theatrics. He once shocked himself with a cattle prod in open court to show the jury that, while it “hurts like hell, it’s not deadly.” An­other time, he threatened to drive a nail through his hand to prove to the jury that it wasn’t really that painful. And he once cross-examined an empty witness chair in an effort to mock opposing counsel.
But these courtroom demonstrations are not the reason that Race­horse Haynes is a legend. The reason is his extraordinary success.
During his five decades of practice, he’s represented 40 clients facing capital punishment; not one has been sentenced to death.
Between 1956 and 1968, Haynes had one of the longest winning streaks in legal history. He defended 163 individuals charged with driving under the influence of alcohol. All 163 were found not guilty.
Comedian, musician and former Texas gubernatorial candidate Kinky Friedman described Haynes as “one of the most successful and most colorful silver-tongued devils to grace Texas since God made trial lawyers.”
Haynes, who turns 82 in April, has been the defense attorney in some of the most prominent Texas murder cases ever tried. He’s been memorialized in three books, two movies, a Broadway play, and even in popular music. In 2003, singer Tom Russell released a single called Racehorse Haynes:
Show me the phone, lend me a dime
I ain’t rollin’ over, I ain’t doing no time
I ain’t coppin’ no plea, I’m hip to your game
I ain’t talkin’ to no one, except Race­horse Haynes
Somebody better call Racehorse Haynes.

EARLY SHTICK GROWS OLD

Richard Haynes split his childhood growing up in Houston and San Antonio. His grandmother read Shakespeare and the Bible to him at bedtime.
He got the nickname “Racehorse” from his high school football coach, who complained that Haynes always darted for the sideline instead of gaining yards downfield.
After a stint with the Marines, Haynes used the GI Bill to pay his way through college and law school. He graduated from the Bates College of Law in 1956.
Haynes became a lawyer on a Fri­day afternoon and was in court trying a criminal case the next Monday morning.
“My first time to address the jury, I stepped right in the [chewing tobacco] spittoon,” he says. “I felt stupid, but the jury apparently felt sorry for me, and probably felt sorry for my client that he had such a stupid and clumsy lawyer. They acquitted him on all charges.”
If that works, Haynes thought, maybe he should try it again. So he started his second trial by stepping in the spittoon again, making it look like an accident. Again, the jury declared his client not guilty. Noting this seemed an effective ice-breaker with the jury, the Houston lawyer did it a third, a fourth—and continued nearly a dozen times. With each pratfall, the result was the same.
Finally, Haynes began another case by heading straight for the courtroom spittoon when the judge called him over to the bench.
“You’re not going to kick over that spittoon again, are ya?” the judge asked.
“I guess not, your honor.” Haynes knew the gag had run its course.
The Dallas Observer described Haynes as a “flamboyant ex-welterweight boxer, South Pacific war hero, motorcyclist, sailor and millionaire with a reputation that has grown to 9 feet tall and weighs in at a junkyard-dog-mean 500 pounds.” He told the weekly that he wanted to practice for another four years and then hang it up. That was in 2003.
But Haynes has no plans to step aside yet.
“I have to work through 2009 because I have a half-dozen cases set for trial,” he says.
Haynes is famous both for the variety and quantity of his cases. For instance, he’s represented three doz­en women in what he refers to as “Smith & Wesson divorces,” which are cases where the husband had been abusive, leading the wife to kill in self-defense.
“I won all but two of those cases,” he says. “And I would have won them if my clients hadn’t kept reloading their gun and firing.”
The biggest of those Smith & Wesson divorces was his defense of Vickie Daniel, a former Dairy Queen worker accused of murdering her husband, who happened to be the speaker of the Texas House of Rep­resentatives and the son of a former Texas governor. Haynes knew the case would be neither popular nor easy.
The Liberty County courthouse windows were open to let in some fresh air as Haynes rose from his chair to start his closing argument. At that very moment, the high school band practicing next door started playing the William Tell Overture. The prosecutor immediately objected, claiming Haynes had orchestrated the whole thing.
“I wish I had, because it is a marvelous idea,” Haynes told the judge.
Courtroom observers say Haynes presented a brilliant defense, showing that the popular legislator had abused his wife, and that she did what she did to protect her health, life and children.
Daniel was acquitted and awarded custody of her kids. The trial established battered spous­al syndrome as a legitimate defense in Texas homicides.
Haynes has been on the other side, too. He once represented a man who had been charged with assaulting a woman. He was convinced his cli­ent was being framed by the accuser. The alleged victim, he says, had a reputation for not telling the truth, as well as for “using a lot of NFL vernacular.”
To make his point, Haynes approached her on cross-examination and stepped on her foot.
The woman spewed a raunchy curse at him.
“That’s all I needed to show the jury, your honor,” Haynes told the court, and then he sat down.
His client was found not guilty on all counts.

A DRAMATIC FLAIR

Haynes has lived by the advice of his mentor, legendary Texas trial lawyer Percy Foreman: “If you can prove the victim abused a dog or a horse, you can convince the jury that the guy deserved to be killed.”
“For some reason,” Haynes continues, “cats don’t apply.”
For Haynes, the courtroom is always a place for theater. He reenacts crime scenes. He mimics opposing counsel. He shouts, screams and dances. He waves around murder weapons—be they guns or cattle prods.
There was a trial in the 1970s in which the prosecutor refused to call a key witness because he knew Haynes would tear him apart on cross-examination. Furious, Haynes used his closing argument to cross-examine an empty witness chair, asking the same probing questions he would have asked the absentee witness.
The stunt was effective; again, the jury acquitted on all counts.
Haynes once defended two members of the Outlaws motorcycle gang named Fat Frank and Super Squirrel. He says his clients were accused of nailing a woman, crucifixion style, to a tree after she “violated the first rule of the oldest profession”—she didn’t share money she made from her prostitution business.
Haynes says Florida prosecutors only pursued the charges because the woman was the daughter of a sheriff’s deputy.
Haynes showed that, as part of the motorcycle gang, the woman had performed a variety of public sexual acts, and he tried to convince the jury that she’d bragged about having her hand nailed and that it hadn’t been that big a deal.

Click here to read more about this image of Richard
“Racehorse” Haynes (left) and Frankie Gusemano.
Photo courtesy of Richard Haynes.
For the closing argument, Haynes had an idea: He would nail a hand to the defense table to show the jury it wasn’t painful. Haynes met with a medical doctor to find out if there was a place in the hand where a nail would cause less damage and blood loss. He then got the doctor to inject his hand with Xylocaine to reduce the pain.
Before the judge could intervene, Haynes called off the stunt.
“I chickened out at the last min­ute,” he says. “I was afraid I would start crying in front of the jury.”
The defense was effective even without the gro­tesque exhibition; the jury found his clients not guilty.
Haynes admits he uses flaws in the court system for the benefit of his clients—sometimes to his regret. Once, he defended two white cops charged with killing a black man. After a long, hard-fought trial, the jury found his clients not guilty. When a reporter asked Haynes to describe the turning point in the case, Haynes blurted his answer: “Well, it was the moment the court chose the last one of those 12 bigots to serve on the jury.”
“For several years after that,” he says, “prosecutors would pass around the newspaper article with that quote in it to prospective jurors.”

EXPERIENCE PAYS OFF

One of Haynes’ biggest cases came in 1976 when he was hired by Fort Worth multimillionaire T. Cul­len Davis, who was charged with murdering his stepdaughter and his estranged wife’s boyfriend, and attempting to kill his wife. At the time, Davis was widely believed to be the wealthiest man to have ever been tried for murder in the United States.
Haynes provided a two-pronged defense: Davis was at a movie theater watching The Bad News Bears at the time of the murder, and an eyewitness put someone else at the scene at the time of the slayings.
The key to getting the jury to believe an alibi defense, he says, is to simultaneously provide an acceptable alternative scenario that points to someone else committing the crime. Haynes interviewed his cli­ent’s wife for 13 days in a cross-exam some critics said put her on trial by forcing her to answer sexual questions unrelated to the allegations.
The verdict: not guilty.
Two years later, Davis was arrested again. This time, he was charged with hiring a hit man to kill the judge in his divorce case, his ex-wife and a handful of others. Prosecutors, who had Davis on audio- and videotape, were confident of a conviction.
But the Houston lawyer once again worked his magic. Haynes told jurors that the state’s key witness was a paid informant who was not to be believed, that Davis went along with the sting operation because he thought he was working for the FBI, and that Davis was so rich that he wasn’t concerned with whether these people lived or died.
To everyone’s shock, Davis was again acquitted.
Haynes loves discussing his cases to teach young lawyers about trial practice. In 1978, he told attendees at an ABA meeting in New York City that attorneys too often limit their strategic defense options in court. When evidence inevitably surfaces that contradicts the defense’s position, lawyers need to have a backup plan.
“Say you sue me because you say my dog bit you,” he told the audience. “Well, now this is my defense: My dog doesn’t bite. And second, in the alternative, my dog was tied up that night. And third, I don’t believe you really got bit.”
His final defense, he said, would be: “I don’t have a dog.”

RICHARD “RACEHORSE” HAYNES
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At a 1952 retrial in Ocala, Fla., Walter Irvin, center, was once again convicted of rape and sentenced to death. He is surrounded here by the lawyers, from left, Alex Akerman, Thurgood Marshall, Paul Perkins and Jack Greenberg.
Florida Apologizes for 'Gross Injustices' to Four Black Men, Decades Later

By JACEY FORTIN

The so-called Groveland Four were convicted of raping a white woman in 1949. This week, the state apologized for its role.

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NEWS ANALYSIS

Trump's Losing Streak in Courts Is Traceable to Conservative Judges

By ADAM LIPTAK

Legal rulings cheered by Republicans when they set back the Obama administration are now causing some grief for the current White House occupant.
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Le Pen Advisor Convicted Of Hate Speech For Complaining About Rise In Muslim School Children

by jonathanturley
Freedom_of_SpeechWe have been discussing (and lamenting) the rollback of free speech in France where writers and speakers are now routinely prosecuted for what would be protected political or religious speech in the United States.  The latest case involves Robert Menard, mayor of Beziers and a top adviser to Marine Le Pen, who has been found guilty of inciting hatred against Muslims.
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He had it all.

I talked to a to a homeless man recently and asked him how he ended up this way.
He said, "Up until last week, I still had it all.  I had plenty to eat, my clothes were washed and pressed,
I had a roof over my head, I had HDTV and Internet, and I went to the gym, the pool, and the library.
"I was working on my MBA on-line.  I had no bills and no debt.  I even had full medical coverage."
I felt sorry for him, so I asked, "What happened?  Drugs?  Alcohol?  Divorce?"
"Oh no, nothing like that," he said.  "No, no.. I was paroled."

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