The Legal and Financial Consequences of a Texas Identity Theft Conviction
Identity theft is a serious crime that involves stealing someone’s “Identifying information” to commit fraud or otRead More
Friends- Mr. Earl Musick is a trusted friend, an outstanding Criminal Defense Lawyer, and a recent Past President of the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association. He has been a Criminal Defense Lawyer for 10 years. Earl is partners with his daughter Joanne Musick. Joanne is also an outstanding criminal defense lawyer and a recent Past President of the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association. Before Earl became a criminal defense lawyer, Earl Musick served as a Houston Police Officer for 31 years. Earl was a legendary police officer. As a police Officer, Earl personally arrested a corrupt Harris County District Court Judge. Earl Musick also served as a Harris County Assistant District Attorney for 4 ½ years. Earl Musick is in the unique position of having served in all three areas of the criminal justice system. Earl’s word is good as gold. As the saying goes, “If he tells you tomorrow is Christmas, you can hang your stocking”. With Earl’s Permission I am posting his comments about the proposed Reciprocal Discovery Bill as a Guest Blog. Thank you Earl & Joanne Musick for all that you do for the cause of Liberty. We are all in your debt. Robb Fickman
Earl Musick says:
I am adamantly opposed to any bill that requires the defense to give their witness list to the STATE. The STATE is extremely powerful. As a prosecutor in Harris County, I never lost a motion and I won every hearing where I disagreed with the defense motions filed. Why? Not because I was a good lawyer, but because I represented the STATE.
Most of the law enforcement agencies have written orders, requiring police officers to contact the prosecutor first before talking with a criminal defense lawyer. Most officers refuse to even talk with criminal defense lawyers. The vast majority of jurors believe police officers credibility above other witnesses. There are several articles written on why officers lie to the courts and when we review cases we see their lies every day. Police officers even misrepresent the truth on minor matters that have no bearing on the case. The bottom line, discovering their names are of no use to the defense bar.
As for most of the other witnesses for the State, they mostly do not want to talk with defense lawyers and the STATE instructs them they do not have to talk with the defense if they do not want to. We are often able to convince civilian witnesses to talk with us about the case and when they do, we usually learn that the police officer making the report has misrepresented the truth. The problem we now face is whether we can share that information with the STATE in order to have the charges dismissed. Last year, I shared such information with the STATE only to have them amend the information three different times, trying to fix the officer’s lies. When it became obvious his lies could not be fixed, they dismissed the charge.
I do not want the STATE contacting my witnesses before trial. The STATE can be very intimidating and my past experiences with many prosecutors strongly suggest not giving them a list of witnesses I plan on calling. Almost daily, a defense subpoenaed witness will not appear in court. When called they usually say, I talked with the prosecutor and they said I did not need to come. All of these things happen way too often in HarrisCounty and more and more innocent citizens are convicted of crimes they did not commit. The Supreme Court has sent a strong message that they are serious about Brady. Brady and the cases that follow give the defense the necessary discovery. Brady has more teeth than any law the legislature might pass.
I have read the bill and also the North Carolina Statute and I am still adamantly opposed.
Earl D. Musick, Attorney at Law
Musick & Musick, LLP
397 N. Sam Houston Pkwy E., Suite 325
Houston, Texas 77060
Client was charged by Federal Indictment with making a social media post that threatened Malicious Damage and Destruction of a Building by Means of Fire and Explosives in violation of Federal law. The Defense showed that Client was a law-abiding citizen. The Defense further showed that the alleged threat was not made with any criminal intent.
The client, a public official with a long history of public service, was accused by a former girlfriend of engaging in non-consensual sexual relations. The Defense investigation and analysis showed through a detailed timeline that the allegation made absolutely no sense. Phone records, including calls and texts, were relied on to help establish an accurate timeline. The Defense met with law enforcement and reviewed a detailed package that exonerated the accused.
Client, a Houston area professional who frequently travels for work, was accused by his wife of assaulting her in his family home. Defense showed that wife’s story lacked credibility and there was no physical evidence in support of the wife’s allegation.
The client, a young Black male, was driving his car when police pulled him over for no apparent reason. It looked to be a profile stop. The client was accused of possessing a controlled substance in his vehicle. The Defense showed that there was no lawful basis for the police to stop the Client’s car. The Defense also showed that there was no lawful basis for the search of the Client’s car. It was a bad search, so the seized evidence was not admissible.
Client charged in Federal Indictment In “Operation Wrecking Ball” with 55 named co-defendants. Client faced seven charges. Client was charged with Conspiracy to Distribute Cocaine and Conspiracy to Engage in Money Laundering. Client was also charged with four counts of Distribution of Cocaine and one count of Money laundering.
Allegations involved client’s alleged use of his home to distribute cocaine. Government’s lengthy investigation involved numerous wiretaps, surveillance, video, pole cams, search warrants, vehicle stops and use of cooperating co-defendants.
Client went to trial with four remaining defendants. After a two-week trial, Judge granted Motion for Acquittal on four of the seven charges. Jury found Client Not Guilty of remaining three charges.
Client charged in Federal Court with two counts of Wire Fraud related to Five SBA EIDL loan applications. The Government alleged the client, a Houston professional, defrauded the Small Business Administration out of over $150,000. The Client faced up to 20 years in prison on each count. The Defense investigated the case and negotiated a deal that included the Government not opposing a probation. The Federal Guideline calculation was for a prison sentence and the Probation Department recommended a prison sentence. Attorney Fickman submitted a 90 page Defense Sentencing Memorandum asking for Probation.
Client was retired professional. Client was accused of being involved in a road rage incident in 1960 Area. Defense put together a 100 page memorandum that demonstrated complainant was actual aggressor.
Client was accused of touching child. Case involved thousands of pages of psychiatric and Child Protective Services records as well as investigations by multiple police departments. After three- year fight, case dismissed.
Client accused of shoving and knocking down family member causing injury. After investigation, charges were dismissed.
Client was accused of knocking disruptive student against the wall. Videotape of incident was obtained. Witnessed located and interviewed. On the day of trial, case was dismissed
Identity theft is a serious crime that involves stealing someone’s “Identifying information” to commit fraud or other illegal activities. “Identifying information” includes:
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