An attorney for biker Tom Modesto Mendez did not file a motion to recuse 19th State District Judge Ralph Strother as expected Monday, but he filed a variety of other motions, including one seeking to quash the indictment.
Strother and court officials had made preparations for attorney Jaime Peña to file a motion to recuse the judge after Peña said he could not be prepared for a scheduled Sept. 10 trial setting in Mendez’s Twin Peaks case.
While Peña did not file the recusal motion, he said late Monday afternoon that he has up until 10 days before trial to file the recusal motion, should he decide to do so. Strother set Monday as the deadline for standard pretrial motions to be filed.
Peña declined comment on the motions and would not reveal if he intends to try to remove Strother from the case. He said Friday that he would file a recusal motion on Monday.
In anticipation of the motion, Strother contacted the regional administrative judge to see if an expedited recusal hearing could be held.
Strother has a pretrial hearing in Mendez’s case set for Thursday. Mendez, the Bandidos San Antonio chapter president, is charged with riot, a first-degree felony, in the May 2015 biker brawl at Twin Peaks that left nine dead and 20 injured.
Mendez would be the second Twin Peaks defendant to stand trial. The trial of Jacob Carrizal, the Bandidos Dallas chapter president, ended in a hung jury and mistrial.
In his motion to quash, Peña alleges the indictment should be thrown out “as unconstitutional for vagueness and overbreadth.”
Strother granted Peña a continuance earlier this month from an Aug. 27 trial setting. But Peña said that extension was not long enough for him to prepare for trial, leading court officials to expect him to file the recusal motion.
OKLAHOMA CITY (KOKH) — One person is dead after a long police pursuit through the metro overnight.
Police say the biker reached speeds of more than 100 miles per hour during the pursuit.
The people in the other car were not injured.
Police have not yet released the identity of that biker.
Christie pushes back on Trump call to outlaw flipping: ‘That’s the way our system is supposed to work’
Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) is pushing back against President Trump’s statement that flipping witnesses should be outlawed in criminal cases.
“That’s the way our system is supposed to work,” Christie, a former federal prosecutor, said on ABC News’s “This Week” Sunday morning.
“It would be wrong to outlaw that, but we have to make sure our prosecutors act responsibly and get corroborating evidence and that may be what the Southern District [of New York] is trying to do
Trump said last Thursday that flipping should be outlawed after his former lawyer, Michael Cohen, took a plea deal two days earlier.
Cohen pleaded guilty to eight charges, including one campaign finance violation in which the president is also implicated, according to Cohen’s lawyer, Lanny Davis.
Davis has also suggested that there may be no corroborating evidence to accompany Cohen’s testimony that the president ordered him to violate campaign finance law, which Christie pointed out Sunday morning. Davis is a columnist for The Hill.
“I think that one of the things that the president fundamentally misunderstands in that comment that he made is that responsible prosecutors, which I considered myself to be one, you don’t just listen to someone who flips, you corroborate them,” Christie said.
“You have to bring in other evidence, because obviously that person has told different stories at different times,” Christie continued.