Dream of: 25 November 1985 "Evidence Of A Bomb"
In the Dallas County courthouse, I walked into County Criminal Court #3 where judge Schwille was the judge. I was scheduled to have a trial and defend Mr. Barello, who had been charged with driving while intoxicated on alcohol.
I felt quite prepared for the trial and expected to perform well. I hadn't actually spent time preparing the previous day because I had already prepared on previous occasions when the trial had been scheduled and postponed. It appeared this time the trial would actually take place.
It was almost time for the trial to begin when I entered. My client was already in the courtroom and seated at the table. I walked over to the judge and stood before his bench. Barely able to see over the top of the bench to where the judge was I said, "Judge, I'm ready."
He looked at me and smiled. I wondered if I should have filed any more pleadings. I said, "The only thing I want to do is invoke the Rule."
I was referring to the rule that potential witnesses not be allowed in the courtroom while other witnesses were testifying. Judge Schwille replied, "Well, as soon as the prosecutor gets out here you can start."
I started to walk to the back room where I thought the prosecutor would be. I didn't know if the prosecutor's witnesses were here so we could proceed with the trial; but then I glanced out into the courtroom and realized the prosecutor had already impaneled the six person jury without my having even been present. The jury was sitting in the courtroom where the audience usually sat.
A young woman attorney whom I had never seen before was seated in the courtroom talking with the jury. She wasn't a prosecutor, but apparently was representing someone on the opposing side. She apparently had been hired by someone to work on the case and was working independently of the prosecutor's office. She looked as if she were about 25 years old. I had the feeling this was her first case.
I walked closer to the lady attorney and realized she was actually already questioning witnesses in front of the jury. I objected to what she was doing and the judge sustained my objection. It struck me that I had taken no part in picking the jury. I regretted that because I needed to have had some personal contact with the jury and talk with them about the case.
The judge rose and walked to the back of the room; I walked over to him. The courtroom was beginning to take on a carnival-like atmosphere – people were milling all about the room. I said, "Judge, look at this courtroom."
He walked back to the bench; I thought he would try to take charge of the situation, but he simply couldn't seem to maintain order.
I turned my attention back to the lady attorney who had begun questioning another witness and I said, "Objection your honor."
I was objecting because I hadn't been able to hear the questions. I was becoming quite upset with the conduct of the female attorney. I felt a surge of anger possess me for a moment, but I didn't want the jury to see me angry. Through it all, however, I felt quite confident about what I was doing. Finally I walked over and sat down at the table.
The judge said that the lady attorney had made motions concerning almost all her client's rights and that he had already granted almost all of them. I was still unsure who the lady attorney's client was. I said, "Well those motions were made when I wasn't even here. I object to that fact."
When I made my objection, I wanted to assure it was recorded; I looked around the courtroom to see if a court reporter was here. I saw the court reporter sitting near Barello. It was a woman who reminded me of someone I knew, but I couldn't exactly place who it was.
Francis, one of the clerks in the court, came out and spoke with me. She said earlier that morning the woman attorney had tried to get my client to sign a statement saying he was guilty. I said, "Well, he's not guilty."
Francis agreed with me that he wasn't guilty.
A friend of Barello's appeared. The friend was going to testify as a character witness for Barello. I thought the friend's testimony would help.
I began walking about the courtroom and overheard someone say that the day Barello had been arrested for driving while intoxicated, he had been working on a bomb at his place of work before he left driving. I thought even though that fact would be irrelevant even if it were true, if it were offered into evidence it could nevertheless harm our case.
I walked over to Barello, put my hand on his shoulder and said to him, "Somebody said that there was a bomb that was being made at your place of work that day."
Barello replied that he would have to explain that to me. I said, "Actually someone mentioned that to me once before and I meant to talk to you about it but I hadn't gotten around to it."
Apparently someone had walked into the room where Barello had been working and had found Barello making a bomb that day. I definitely needed to talk with Barello about that.
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