Navarro County, Texas – well, once again put on my traveling shoes. Never afraid to go to the little court house in the woods. A lot of folks just don’t believe they will get fair treatment by using local counsel. Or, they like to say – “I want a Dallas lawyer.” There is something about the Dallas Bar – i think they all believe we are, how to say, a-holes.
In this case, I was up against this guy – won’t use his name. Just say this – he has a billboard on every street corner in Corsicana, Texas. He took one look at me – the Dallas lawyer in my pink-flower readers, boots, yellow tie and black suit and thought – “I got this.” So, he lines up his junior bird man against me. That’s okay. I was the movant, so I go first.
-Hearing involves my Motion to Dismiss and for Sanctions for a frivolous pleading-
So, I start up with my opening. This case is a bit law intensive and I am running through it. I’m prepared. The junior bird man is trying to get a word in edgewise when it becomes clear he is over his head. The local senior guy, “Big Dog,” starts to coach bird man and then says, “I’m taking over.” Well the rules don’t allow that. Once counsel starts, he is in the game (at least for that portion of the ride). I object. Big dog, won’t sit down. Becomes drama. I tell him straight up – “you, cannot take over, against the rules.” Just put it this way, everybody’s voice is above the casual conversation line. Judge sustains my objection. Big Dog sits down.
So the closing ends, and Big Dog decides to call his client to the stand. For brevity, this is a special kind of hearing that is normally done on the pleadings alone. But, Big Dog wants his client on the stand. Okay. Big Dog puts on a woe me, its not fair, and I haven’t received justice case. His client and witness couldn’t answer a question without an objection coming out of me. Big Dog couldn’t ask a question and his witness couldn’t answer them. I don’t think I have in any hearing at any time in my career objected to a line of questioning as I did this one. But anyways.
I took her on cross. For brevity, she did not survive. She’s a liar. She’s trying to deceive the Court. You see, there had been multiple hearings on the same subject matter as the Navarro County case in Michigan and Tennessee. I had all the docs from those two cases – certified. So, I took the transcript from the Michigan case and took her down the path of cross examination. That judge turned to her and gave her the long stare down. Just sat there looking at her. Staring. Listening.
At the conclusion of the hearing, Big Dog threatens to beat me up – really? Court says I’ll have my ruling tomorrow morning.
Result — Big Dog’s case was dismissed. My client and I were awarded $15,000 in sanctions. You bet.
Big Dog didn’t even shake my hand at the conclusion of the hearing.