Defending Against Texas DWI Charges: Strategies to Protect Your Rights
Facing driving while intoxicated (DWI) charges in Texas can be a distressing and overwhelming experience. A DWI conviction cRead More
The Harris County, Criminal Lawyers Association, reads the Declaration of Independence in front of the criminal courthouse every year. I started this tradition in 2010. Since then, we have promoted the reading of the Declaration around the state. In 2016, we organized defense bar readings of the Declaration in all 254 counties in Texas.
Some of my colleagues elect not to participate in the readings. I understand and respect their decision. While The Declaration was key to our nation’s founding, it is important to recognize that the Declaration is far from perfect. It was written by white men for white men and no one else. Not one slave was freed by the Declaration. The primary author of the Declaration was a slave owner. Native Americans are referred to as “savages” in the Declaration. No one should labor under the misconception that the Declaration was without serious problems.
Nevertheless, the Declaration is key to our history. The Declaration is part of the continuum in our nation’s struggle for liberty and justice for all. The Declaration was followed by the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Civil War, the Emancipation Proclamation, the 13th Amendment, the Women’s Suffragette movement, the Civil Rights Movement, the Gay Rights Movement, and, more recently, the Black Lives Matter Movement. All these events and movements have advanced the cause of liberty. Still, we are not yet a country where we have liberty and justice for all. So, we strive to make a more perfect union.
Dr. Martin Luther King’s words have greatly influenced my opinion about the Declaration’s significance. Specifically, in his “I Have a Dream Speech,” Dr. King referred to the Declaration. He compared the Declaration to a promissory note. He said that the United States had defaulted on that promissory note.
Dr. King said in part, “When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men — yes, Black men as well as white men — would be guaranteed the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note as far as her citizens of color is concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check which has come back marked as insufficient funds. But we refuse to believe that the Bank of Justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. And so, we’ve come to cash this check, a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism.”
In reading the Declaration, I hope we are annually reminding ourselves and others of the still unfulfilled promises of the Declaration and “the fierce urgency of now.” In this era where rights are being stripped from our fellow citizens daily, we would do well to remember the promises of the Declaration and our obligation as Americans to honor those promises.
The client believed to be facing potential Wire Fraud Charges related to SBA PPP loan applications. Investigation of applications for PPP loans and PPP forgiveness demonstrated that the Client had at all times acted in a lawful manner. Investigation demonstrated no fraud was committed by the client. Case closed.
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 Government also found the intended loss was over half a million dollars. 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.
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