POSTED: Friday, June 18, 2010 - 10:34pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - 9:56am
The reversal of two of the Mineola swingers convictions has sent shockwaves through the courthouse.
And for one attorney, it is a moment of vindication.
The convictions and life sentences of Patrick Kelly and Jamie Pittman in the so-called Mineola swingers case has set the stage for a retrial.
But for Kelly’s trial attorney Thad Davidson, it is proof of every accusation he has made about the district attorney’s office, and the court of Judge Jack Skeen.
“Judge Skeen invents rules of evidence. He favors the state. He is the prosecution with a robe on,” Davidson says.
Davidson was not in the state when the ruling came down from the 14th court of appeals that his client Patrick Kelly will be getting a new trial. But he was eager to talk about it.
“Obviously they thought they were just going to run over my client and run over me like they typically do.” He told us. “But I put my foot down, I stood my ground and I said no. I fought back, and here we are two years later with a reversal. “
To say he is bitter about his treatment by Judge Jack Skeen and the District Attorney’s office would be a masterpiece of understatement.
“The Houston Court of Appeals flat out said that Judge Skeen has adopted ad hoc rules of evidence,” Davidson explains. “Let me translate that for you. It means he invented rules of evidence. Jack’s rules of evidence.”
“We have always believed that the evidence was legally sufficient,” says DA Matt Bingham. “When Jim Wheeler didn’t believe it, when Wes Volberding didn’t believe it, when Thad Davidson didn’t believe it, we did and the appellate court does.”
“Anybody who thinks that Joe Murphy is an honorable prosecutor needs to sit in that court,” Davidson counters. “Anybody who thinks that the DA’s office at the upper level is doing a fine and honorable job, is ignorant and doesn’t know what’s going on.”
“I do believe,” Bingham admits, “looking at that, that Joe Murphy asked some questions that he shouldn’t have asked. So let’s just own up to it and move on.”
“Then why doesn’t he fire him?” Davidson asked. “Why is he putting up with a crooked, corrupt, dishonest, dishonorable prosecutor.”
Bingham concluded, “I’m glad that after 4 months of having to listen to ‘they withhold evidence, misconduct and win at all costs’ kind of things. That’s not what the appellate court said.”
“If anybody thinks that we’re done, that we’re satisfied with that. They’re dreaming,” Davidson retorted. “There will be future developments like in the next month. You’ll have plenty to report about, I promise you.”