During the month of February 2015 we received three new Death Penalty cases from Defense Attorneys Katherine Scardino and Jimmy Phillips.
Escaped Brazos County Inmates
The first case is a seven-year-old case being tried in Brazos County on a change of venue. Two inmates attempted to escape from a work project in a field where 80 inmates were working. During the escape one of the guards on horseback fell from her horse, hitting her head on a rock which resulted in a fatal injury. We are in the initial stages of this investigation.
The Port Lavaca Death Penalty Case
The second case involves a Death Penalty case in Port Lavaca, in which a Defendant was charged with the murder of his wife and three children. We have received minimal discovery on this case.
The Houston Check Cashing Murders
The third case is a highly publicized case here in Harris County. Alfred Brown was convicted for participating in a robbery in 2003 that resulted in the killing of a Houston Police Officer and an ACE Check Cashing clerk.
Brown has been on Death Row since his conviction and has adamantly denied his presence during the robbery. Brown claims that he was at his girlfriend’s apartment at the time the robbery/murder occurred and he had called his girlfriend at work from her home phone, establishing his alibi. The girlfriend testified to the same fact situation in the Grand Jury, but was evidently badgered by the Jury Foreman, who was a Houston Police Officer. Finally, after being told she would lose her children to CPS if she continued with her story, she recanted about the phone call.
One Co-defendant gave a statement naming another individual as the third participant in the robbery. The third Co-defendant testified that Alfred Brown was, in fact, present and responsible for one of the killings.
Last year a retired Houston Police Detective was cleaning out some of his old records when he found the subpoenaed information regarding the Defendant’s phone calls to his girlfriend, which substantiated the Defendant’s alibi. The case has been sent back to Harris County for a retrial. This could be a situation where an innocent man has been on Death Row for years and had it not been for the integrity of the former homicide detective in producing the records, he may very well have been put to death.
We are in the initial stages of preparing our defense at this time while we are awaiting the District Attorney’s decision about whether they will try the Defendant for a second time.