Defense attorney appears to have given to the accused client the names of grand jurors (no addresses or phone numbers or identifiers) and suggests that the suspect visit with any of the members he knows and ask them to vote for no indictment. Ever come across this before? BTW, this is a small county where it is not uncommon that one or more grand jurors know the suspects and/or witnesses.
Posts: 39 | Location: Sinton, Texas, USA | Registered: February 26, 2004
Um...wow. Have you called the State Bar ethics hotline to see what you should do? As an attorney, if you are aware of a breach of ethics by an attorney, you are required to report the attorney, but if you're uncertain, then call and ask whether it fits. This to me seems at least borderline unethical (ok, this REALLY offended me, but putting my finger on the actual ethical violation will take more time for thought than I have). Surely there is some sort of improper influence rule out there.
You know, if the defendant does contact the grand jurors outside of the GJ proceedings, there is a chance they could become witnesses and you might need a new grand jury to hear the evidence in the original case (as well any potential cases that come from the contact if the defendant does or says anything stupid like attempt to bribe or threaten them).
Posts: 1089 | Location: UNT Dallas | Registered: June 29, 2004
I would file a motion informing the court of this information and ask for an immediate instanter hearing with defendant and his attorney present and have an inquiry by the court conducted in open court and on the record with both of them.
Posts: 2578 | Location: The Great State of Texas | Registered: December 26, 2001