Saturday, November 22, 2008

Juan Guerra a Little Crazy Part 2

The Houston Chronicle is following the story of the Willacy County DA who indicted Vice President Dick Cheney and Former Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez along with a state senator and a district judge. I posted the original story and did a little online research. From what I read I asked if these were the actions of a mentally balanced individual. This morning, the chronicle has a follow up story and the question still stands. A hearing to quash the indictments was held this week. It was originally held Wednesday, but DA Guerra didn't bother to show up. Why the judge allowed him to get away with that I don't understand. However, DA Guerra really showed his imbalance according to the article;

"... Guerra pounded the table and accused Banales of giving the defendants special treatment in allowing motions to quash the indictments to be heard before the defendants were arraigned.

"Now all of a sudden there is urgency!" Guerra shouted at Banales. "Eighteen months you kept me indicted through the election!"

To me, Guerra contradicts himself with this statement, showing that this whole crusade of his is personal. He lost the democratic primaries last month and is trying not to go gently into that good night. Remember originally Guerra said he didn't indict the Vice President, the grand jury did? Someone needs to remind him that the grand jury indicted him not the judge.

"What came out today was the mental state of the prosecutor was exposed to the court," said Tony Canales, co-counsel representing private prison company The GEO Group. But that talk only incited Guerra, who said he's heard himself called "loco" before."

How about "loco que una rata sh**house!"

Friday, November 21, 2008

Hey Mikey!!!!

Michael Chertoff has said that Texas has had enough money to recover from Hurricane Ike.

Hey Mikey! Got a question for you! How come you can say to Texas that we have enough federal money to rebuild from our natural disaster yet you lacked the balls to tell Louisiana the same thing? No disrespect to Louisiana, but we're better managed, more prepared, and we do depend less on you incompetent feds for support. Oh well, to hell with you and the federal government! I guess because Texas is better managed and run and more financially responsible disqualifies us from federal money. We don't need to follow the example of Freddie and Fannie and auto industry just to receive federal money.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

HPD Armchair Quarterbacks its Officers

I caught this story in this morning's edition of the chronicle. Remember the police chase in which a man claiming to be a federal agent was shot and killed after he initiated a pursuit? Well, Houston Police Chief Harold Hurtt has disciplined two officers involved in the shooting. A major pet peeve of police officers is being second guessed by administrators who weren't even there. Of course there is a video and you can watch the video attached to the link. I'd like to know how Chief Hurtt was watching this video. The internal investigation found that;

"Sgt. Andrew J. Washington and Officer Cecil A.T. Foster did not use sound judgment and did not follow department policy in the incident."

The department policy, they didn't talk to the man at the end of the chase! One officer was given a 1-day suspension and the other officer was given a written reprimand. Both are appealing their punishments.

One could ask if Chief Hurtt and IAD were watching the video through the eyes of an officer in that situation, at that exact moment in time. Or with the eyes of a long time police administrator trying to use the benefit of hindsight, and "what ifs." Because the city is now being sued over this were they watching this video looking for the slightest policy violation so disciplinary action could be handed out to cover the city? Watch the video at the end of the chase. You can hear officers giving verbal commands which are plainly being ignored, so they are talking to him but he isn't listening. I guess that isn't included in the HPD definition of "sound judgment" and "talking to the man." Keep in mind, when an administrator like Hurtt uses the term "sound judgment" it means one of two things. The first is that the officer did something contrary to common sense that it is unfathomable (not this case). The second meaning translates "with the benefit of hindsight and from my cushy armchair this is what I would have done knowing what the outcome is!" What Hurtt has also done is given ACLU-police hating attorney Randall Kallinen an argument to give to a jury of potentially ill-informed people who will believe that C-A-T really spells dog if you tell them right. Kallinen is now saying this policy violation proves his case. No it doesn't. What most people don't understand is that a violation of policy doesn't mean a violation of the law or liability. Department policies are rules and guidelines that are supposed to have all officers act the same way in any situation. Well, policies, like laws are interpreted differently by different people. Also, policies cannot foresee every possible situation and that's when officer discretion has to kick in. Think about this, situations can change in an instant, policies and procedures don't change. For example, let's say a department has a policy that says officers, while involved in a vehicle pursuit, cannot chase the criminal the wrong way on the highway. Okay, that is fine and dandy. Let's say the man running just killed a woman and kidnapped her baby. Knowing this policy he drives east in the west bound lanes and by stroke of luck, there is no west bound traffic. Now, what is this officer supposed to do? Follow department policy and not chase the kidnapper? Or use judgment and go after the kidnapper the wrong way on an empty road? Remember, situations change, polices don't.

At least HPD's internal investigation found the shooting to be justified. At least Hurtt could see that from the video.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

South Texas DA Maybe a Little Crazy

That, or Willacy County District Attorney Juan Angel Guerra has watched way too many episodes of 'Law & Order.' In this story, DA Guerra got a grand jury indictment against Vice President Dick Cheney and Former Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez. According to the article, the 'indictment' is for;

"Cheney's indictment on a charge of engaging in an organized criminal activity criticizes the vice president's investment in the Vanguard Group, which holds interests in the private prison companies running the federal detention centers. It accuses Cheney of a conflict of interest and "at least misdemeanor assaults" on detainees because of his link to the prison companies."

So, Guerra says because Cheney holds an interest in a company that runs federal prisons, this makes him responsible for 'misdemeanor' assaults. Okay, let's look at Juan Guerra's track record;

In February of 2007, the Brownsville Herald reported that four criminal cases and two civil cases had to be dismissed because of Guerra's absence from court. The reason for his absence was "his office computers were seized as part of an investigation that led to his Feb. 11 arrest."
Guerra was indicted himself until last month when a judge dismissed the charges against him for lack of evidence. Now, read further down the article at what Guerra did when threatened with contempt of court charges. He "camped in front of the Willacy County Jail, daring authorities to arrest him on a trespassing charge. Since last weekend, he's added livestock to the campsite." Are these the actions of a mentally balanced individual?

In August of this year, three county officials started a petition to remove Guerra from office.

In March of 2007, after an indictment against him had been dismissed, Guerra refused to take cases filed by the agencies that investigated him. This resulted in 23 criminal cases being dismissed. Guerra "vowed to push to dismiss cases until Police Chief Uvaldo Zamora and Chief Deputy David Martinez are fired" So, basically Guerra is refusing to do his job due to a personal grudge.

I'm sure by now you can see where this is going. Of course by reading the peanut gallery of chronicle comments many are joyous. Problem is they are so blinded by their hatred of Cheney and Gonzales they obviously have not taken the time to read the article and see the glaring problems with the character of Guerra. An interesting tidbit of information is brought out in this article.

"A second batch of indictments targeted public officials connected to Guerra's own legal battles.

Willacy County Clerk Gilbert Lozano, District judges Janet Leal and Migdalia Lopez, and special prosecutors Mervyn Mosbacker Jr. — a former U.S. attorney — and Gustavo Garza — a long-time political opponent of Guerra — were all indicted on charges of official abuse of official capacity and official oppression."

Going through the google searches on Guerra all of these names have turned up. All of these people that are under indictment now have been involved in some legal action against Guerra in the past. Guerra lost his bid for his fourth re-election in the primaries last spring. It will be interesting to see how this all pans out in the end. I imagine all the indictments will eventually be squashed. This reads more like a political statement made by a man with a grudge and a hammer.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Heard of Shoreacres, TX?

The Houston Chronicle had an interesting article about Shoreacres, TX. This small town is still practically in ruins after Hurricane Ike. Click on the link to read the article and see some interesting pictures. One question I have though. How come the people and the government there aren't clamoring all over the news media for the government to snap its fingers and rebuild them? Just a thought.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Chronicle Says Something Dumb

I know that's not a surprise. Yet, I was especially surprised by this comment. Today's front page of the Houston chronicle website has a picture of a child with the heading;

'Yes They Can To'
"Thanks to Barack Obama's victory, Houston children like 10-year-old Taiya Youngs say now there's nothing stopping them from reaching their goals. Watch as they share their dreams."

Questions. Who told this child that before last night she couldn't dream and be anything she wanted? What was stopping her before? Is the chronicle trying to say that after last night racism is no longer a problem? Does this mean the race victim mentality is dead?

Monday, November 3, 2008

Man Shot While Shooting at Cars

This is an example of some of the crazy people that live in Houston. This guy shot a security guard at a night club off of Telephone Rd. (that in itself is a hazard). More than likely he was drunk as hell and in his stupor thought shooting at passing cars was righteous. An HPD officer spots him and after the ensuing gunfight the suspect ends up shot and killed. I doubt he will be missed.