Category Archives: Court Opinions

False Confessions: Police Get Them, Prosecutors Use Them – Three Recent Examples and How to Protect Yourself

Let’s talk about Confessions.  False confessions. Think about this: you’re tried — and convicted — of a very public crime, let’s say a homicide, and sent off to prison. Your lawyers keep working; the judge orders a retrial. Then, wham! The prosecutors in the case go before the judge and file their motion to dismiss…


Texas Court of Criminal Appeals: Case of First Impression on Texas’ New Junk Science Law

Two years ago, we were optimistic about the efforts being made by many to resolve a huge problem of injustice here: the problem of “junk science.” All too often in this state, and across the country, “junk science” is being used to wrongfully convict innocent people of crime. Some are even sentenced to death based,…


Prosecutorial Misconduct in Texas Alert: Ethical Rules Held to Have Broader Duty Than Brady to Turn Over Exculpatory Evidence to the Defense

Back in November 2014, a State Bar of Texas Grievance Committee ruled that a Denton County assistant district attorney named William (”Bill”) Schultz had violated the ethical rules that all Texas attorneys are sworn to uphold.  Not only that, but more: he had committed a serious ethics violation and his unethical conduct deserved suspension from…


Fighting the Prosecutor on Just Punishment: Evidence on Sentencing and Probation After a Conviction in Texas

For many people, maybe because it seems like it in so many TV shows, criminal trials are one big event.  It’s exciting and fast-paced, where the attorneys roam the courtrooms, there’s very little paperwork, and there are lots of people going up to the witness stand for short stints. In reality, things are different. Two…


Success in Intoxication Manslaughter Case Before Fort Worth Court of Appeals: Patterson v. State of Texas

The Fort Worth Court of Appeals (panel of Justices Walker, Gabriel, and Sudderth) has issued its opinion in an appeal of an intoxication manslaughter case coming out of Cooke County, Texas.  Michael Lowe was not on board for the criminal DWI / manslaughter trial court proceedings; he began representing the defendant, Steve Patterson, afterwards in…


When The Police Stop You: the Law and Your Need for a Zealous Defense Lawyer

The death of Freddie Gray while in the custody of the Baltimore Police Department continues to be big news here in Dallas and the rest of the country: this week, the six police officers who were arrested in connection with what the medical examiner ruled a homicide of Freddie Gray are quickly beginning their defense….


Why the Jane Does’ CVRA Lawsuit Re Alleged Epstein Child Sex Ring Drags On

This news story has everything it needs to become one of the biggest scandals of the 21st Century:  there’s sex and power, of course.  Add to that the targeted criminal defendant, Jeffrey Epstein – so rich he owns his own island; political players like Bill Clinton; a famous lawyer and Harvard Law Professor, Alan Dershowitz…


Police Brutality in Texas? Robert Tolan Wins as 1983 Excessive Force Case Returned to Trial by US Supreme Court

Robert Tolan fights for justice.  How many other Texans have 1983 excessive force cases against police officers that they are afraid to file? Earlier this month, the United States Supreme Court reversed the decision of our own Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals (the federal appellate court that grades the papers of federal criminal trial courts…


Navarette v. California: Supreme Court Okays Anonymous Tip for Traffic Stop — We’ve All Lost Something Today

Back in January, we warned about what happened today: the United States Supreme Court has okayed police pulling people over to search their vehicles based upon an anonymous tip in the case of Navarette v. California. In February, we were still reeling from the SCOTUS decision in Fernandez, where they found it legally permissible and…


The Power of the Police to Search Your Home and Property: 2 New High Court Opinions On When Police Can Search Without a Warrant in Texas

It seems like there are weekly, if not daily, news stories covering excessive force or unwarranted use of police power by law enforcement officers around the country and it is only through the criminal justice system – particularly criminal defense fights and judicial reasoning and opinion – that people can find justice from overzealous police…