It’s nice to be needed. And given the overall changes in the world around us, criminal defense lawyers are needed more than ever. We provide balance to an often seemingly imbalanced system—and hope, reassurance, and when it goes best, rescue to those whom we serve. We are the ones who consistently challenge the status quo. We are the ones who are unafraid to be in the minority.
Special thank to Deandra Grant (Dallas), Larry Boyd (Dallas), and Abe Factor (Fort Worth), our course directors for our 9th Annual DWI Defense Project held in Arlington in May. Thanks to them and our speakers, we had an outstanding line of presentations on DWI defense. We encourage our members to attend our DWI CLE.
We have a great line up of DWI CLE in the coming months. Please join us for these quality DWI seminars:
I am excited and humbled to take the reins of leadership as President of TCDLA—thanks to Sam Bassett for a great year! We are the statewide criminal defense lawyers’ professional association in the State of Texas. We are 3,100 members strong. We are the voice for the defense in both word and deed. I thank each and every one of you for your membership, and for your support for our TCDLA.
27 | Expediting Production of DWI Audio/Video Recordings Even Where Charges Have Not Been Filed - By Gary Trichter & Ed McClees
33 | WE Are UNLESS - By Rick Oliver
37 | Tribal Wars and Jail House Suicide - By Judge Wayne Patrick Priest
7 | President's Message
We’ve all been there. You’re set for trial, you get the State’s witness list, and a name seems vaguely familiar... and uh-oh, you’ve represented one of the witnesses before. And now the state intends to call him as a witness at trial, to testify against your current client.
There is a blithe irony in our honoring Buck for his 200th article for this publication—a man of few words for having expressed literally thousands of them. In fact, if you know Buck, you’ve likely had entire conversations when he used only three: “Never Quit. Never.”
Buck calls that phrase his “mantra,” and it is profoundly self-expository. In fact, it is its speaker in sum.
In October 1986 the U.S. president was Reagan, Thatcher was UK Prime Minister, and Gorbachev was in power in Russia. The Berlin Wall yet divided East and West Germany. “Magnum PI” was the most popular TV show, the Mets won the 1986 World Series.
This column is about Robert C. Nalley, a Maryland state judge who committed a federal criminal offense in a courtroom where he was hearing pre-trial matters before jury selection began. You will see in real time what the judge does and how it impacted the defendant, Delvon King-Ali, who was standing before him:
It seems I’ve been dangling Off the Back lately . . . regularly advising good clients of bad news. It’s been a headwind, for sure. And not something to share with many. Mostly, it’s a private struggle. And such a dichotomy. Strength on the outside, weakness on the inside. I could not have scripted the human condition any better. Inevitably, the self-doubt follows: Do I really think I’m helping anybody? Gratefully, the answer does not exist in the microcosm of introspection. Rather, it’s found in the macrocosm of the justice system in which we work.
“Life Is Like a Mountain Railway”
Life is like a mountain railway
With an engineer that’s brave
We must make this run successful
From the cradle to the grave.
Heed the curves and watch the tunnels
Never falter, never fail
Keep your hands upon the throttle
And your eye upon the rail.
The gold standard—the absolute best, the benchmark, the epitome of perfection. It’s what many of us aspire to be professionally and what few actually achieve. Buck Files is no doubt the gold standard among us. He has been a consistent and quality contributor to The Voice for 30 years. In this regard, his contribution to TCDLA is unparalleled. TCDLA is fortunate to have had Buck on its team for all these years. There is no sign of him slowing down, either!
The TCDLA Board of Directors met on Saturday, February 13, 2016, in New Orleans. The following motions were made and passed:
Have you ever…..
25 | Buck Files Makes It 200! - By Bobby Mims
27 | “Never Quit. Never.” A Tribute to Buck Files - By Frank E. Stevenson
29 | 2016 TCDLA Long Range Plan - By TCDLA Long Range Planning Committee
35 | The Kibitzer Case - By Judge Wayne Patrick Priest
37 | Privilege vs. Confidentiality - By Dean Watts
The Pre-Columbian Artifacts case had already been tried and appealed once before I ever became involved in it. The Defendants had all been convicted, both of transporting the artifacts in international and interstate commerce and of conspiring to do so. The Fifth Circuit had sent the case back to Judge John H.
My court-appointed client, Jermaine Jones (JJ), a career offender, had been indicted in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas, Waco Division, for possessing just shy of 46 grams of crack cocaine and a loaded .45 handgun. Four Deputy U.S.