An alert FrontBurnervian points us to a compelling story in the Guardian about the U.S. county with the most police killings per capita. It is Kern County, in California. You should read the story (the Guardian’s online presentation is pretty slick). But about midway through the story, I saw this chart and was a little startled to learn that Dallas and Tarrant counties are in a five-way tie for fifth place. I mean, Chicago has had a rash of gun violence, yet Cook County, Illinois, with more than twice Dallas County’s population, has fewer police killings. What’s going on here?Read More
The lawyers for the family of former Irving teenager Ahmed Mohamed sent a letter demanding $10 million from the city of Irving and $5 million from the Irving school district for how police and officials handled the clock controversy.
From the letter, via DMN:
He will continue for the rest of his days to experience pain and suffering. A large segment of potential employers will steer clear of Ahmed to avoid controversy, despite his many obvious talents. There is no other way to put it: his reputation in the global community is permanently scarred. One also that Ahmed, quite reasonably, will have a lifelong fear of the law enforcement and educational establishments that have let him down so terribly.Read More
If you’ve been reading FrontBurner awhile, there’s a chance you’ll remember Scott Clearman. He’s the bow tie-wearing Houston attorney who filed a class-action suit against Stream Energy, alleging that the local power provider was a pyramid scheme. We were dragged into the affair because I profiled Stream’s founder, Rob Snyder, in 2006, and our sister pub D CEO wrote about him in 2010. I had some fun at Clearman’s expense in 2009, when he sent me a letter warning me that he might demand all the emails, ever, between me and Rob. Then I had a chuckle in 2012 when Clearman had D Magazine served.
Well, it has a taken many years and many dollars, but Clearman’s lawsuit is finally dead — or, if not fully dead, it’s doing that thing where it grabs at the gunshot wound in its stomach and gurgles right before it falls into a lifeless heap on the dirt road that runs through the center of town, as the sheriff holsters his six shooter. Sorry, I got carried away. Anyway, The U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans reversed a lower court’s ruling. Stream put out a press release today about the matter.Read More
As Tim mentioned in Leading Off this morning, Dallas taxi operators have sued to prevent Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport from allowing drivers for app-based services like Uber and Lyft from picking up passengers there. Cabbies argue that “the entire culture that has developed at the airport taxicab queue is one based on the American dream.” By implication, D/FW officials hate the American dream.
What do you think?Read More
He wasn’t picked to sit on a jury at the George Allen Courts Building this morning. But if he had been…Read More
More than 30 Dallas-Fort Worth attorneys are vying for designation as top corporate counselors in this year’s awards.Read More
The writing’s been on the wall for a while now, but today it’s official: Forest City has sued Headington Companies. As I told you a couple weeks ago, the new Forty Five Ten will be very close to its neighbor, the Wilson Building (where I live). The new building’s height and proximity will block the windows in eight of the units facing west.
Both companies have spent a lot of money and a lot of time developing the core of the city (Headington with his work along Main; Forest City with its residential buildings). I guess it was only a matter of time until the two giants clashed.
The video above, prepared by Forest City’s team, shows their reasoning behind the lawsuit and the possible impact of the new building.
You can read the lawsuit here.
UPDATE 4:40 p.m.: Headington’s people respond.
“Our client believes the lawsuit grossly mischaracterizes the facts related to this project,” says William A. Brewer III, partner at Brewer, Attorneys & Counselors and lead counsel for Headington. “The project, which has enjoyed widespread support from many city leaders and community stakeholders, brings a significant new business to the downtown district.”
Brewer continued, “Although our client has attempted to work cooperatively with Forest City, they have rebuffed those efforts and instead chosen to file a lawsuit which we believe lacks merit. We believe the release by Forest City of a professional video in conjunction with the filing of the lawsuit should be viewed as what it is – a desperate attempt to disparage Headington and to extract value to which Forest City is not entitled.”Read More
Hunt oil heir Al Hill III has gotten some bad news. Read this Texas Lawyer story if you want a fuller understanding. (If the link won’t let you read the story, just google “Al Hill” and “Texas Lawyer”; they’ll let you in through that door.) Upshot: a judge has ruled that an appeals court mandate stands, and Hill III owes a raft of lawyers nearly $41 million. That’s a big number. One wonders whether Hill III, now living in Atlanta, has ever considered pulling a Wyly.
Please understand that I am not commenting here on the merits of Ebola survivor Nina Pham’s lawsuit against Texas Health Resources. She says she has nightmares and her hair is falling out. She says Presby used a video of her without her consent. Maybe she’s entitled to some money. And maybe, as she has said, she really does want to “make hospitals and big corporations realize that nurses and health care workers, especially frontline people, are important.”
No, what I want to talk about is Charla Aldous, the lawyer representing Pham. Because Aldous has pretty much posterized Texas Health, and right now she’s hanging on the rim, looking down at Texas Health, enjoying the afterglow of her monster dunk. If I’m reading her playbook correctly — and I’d like to think I am — here’s how she did it:Read More
D’Metria Benson is the worst civil court judge in Dallas County. As the Observer recently noted, every two years, the Dallas Bar conducts a poll to rate our judges; Benson winds up at the bottom of the heap. In 2013, 86 percent of the 294 lawyers who shared their opinion of Benson said that her work needs improvement.Read More
Yesterday at the Earle Cabell Federal Building, in the fine city of Dallas, Texas, a fellow named Andrew Blake wore a curious t-shirt to Judge Sam Lindsay’s court for a hearing to determine how much longer Barrett Brown ought to stay in prison. Blake got his shirt while covering the trial of Chelsea Manning. It was black, with one word, in white, printed across its chest: “truth.” Before things got started yesterday, a federal marshal approached Blake and told him he had to cover up the word. In case you missed that: he had to cover up “truth.” In a courtroom. That’s how it went for much of yesterday, like a script for a bad movie that any reasonable studio executive would read and reject because no way could the plot transpire in real life.Read More
High-Speed Rail Line Likened to Berlin Wall. Judging by the responses we’ve seen in the comments of previous articles about the possibility, Dallas residents seem generally excited about the prospect of a high-speed rail line being built that will mean Houston is just 90 minutes away by train. But WFAA spoke with several Ellis County landowners who are none too excited about their property being divided by the project.
Prime Prep to Merge With Another School. The struggling charter academy, co-founded by former NFL star Deion Sanders, will reportedly hook up with another Oak Cliff campus, Triple A Academy. It’s not clear whether Triple A’s recent 117-10 basketball win had anything to do with the decision.
Cowboys Fan Sues NFL For $88 Billion. Terry Hendrix is upset about the officials’ reversal of Dez Bryant’s catch during this year’s playoff game against the Green Bay Packers, claiming damages for the league’s “negligence, breach of fiduciary duty, and also reckless disregard.” The hand-written lawsuit was filed on Wednesday. Also of note, Hendrix is incarcerated in a Colorado correctional institution.
Dogs Mysteriously Disappearing in Wise County. And there’s “not one shred of physical evidence that proves the dogs were taken.” Has the pet rapture begun?Read More
In recent months, the National Center for Policy Analysis has worked hard to put a sex scandal involving its founder behind it. The free-market think tank fired the founder, John C. Goodman, hired a new leader (tea party star Allen B. West), and scheduled several high-profile speakers for its events. Now, however, the Dallas-based NCPA has filed a lawsuit against a prominent law firm and the firm’s chairman emeritus that revisits the sex scandal in detail. Among other things, the suit asserts that l’affaire Goodman caused the nonprofit organization to lose at least $2 million in fundraising—and nearly put it out of business.Read More
Baylor Hospital Could Lose Hundreds of Millions in Federal Funds. Inspectors for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently found several instances of psychiatric patients walking away from the emergency department at Baylor University Medical Center. The violations potentially could cost the hospital up to $300 million in annual revenue it receives from Medicare, though Baylor is devising a plan to fix its problems, which it will submit to Texas Department of State Health Services by Monday.
Judge Rules Texas Voter ID Law Unconstitutional. U.S. District Judge Nelva Gonzales Ramos issued an opinion late Thursday holding that the 2011 bill requiring photo identification for anyone to cast a valid election ballot places an undue burden on the right to vote and has a discriminatory effect on Hispanics and African-Americans. Attorney general Greg Abbott, who is also running for governor (in case you haven’t heard), announced immediately that his office would appeal the decision. It’s not clear yet how the ruling will affect the election that’s only a few weeks away.
Dallas Stars Lose Season Opener. They played great against a great team, but fell to the Chicago Blackhawks in a shootout.
Scam Targets Morning News Subscribers. Do not send $600 to an Oregon post office box to get the newspaper.
Today is Double Tenth National Day in Taiwan. It commemorates the start of the 1911 uprising that led to the collapse of the Qing Dynasty and establishment of the Republic of China. It’s also an office holiday for D Magazine Partners, celebrated in lieu of Columbus Day this weekend because of the horrific crimes Christopher Columbus committed against the native peoples of the Americas. (To be honest, I think it’s just because we decided we preferred getting a Friday off to getting a Monday off.)
It’s fitting that we’re posting this story during the annual run of the State Fair of Texas, since it concerns the later years of George Dahl, the architect who deserves much of the credit for the acclaimed Art Deco buildings at Fair Park. Unfortunately, the article doesn’t focus on the legacy of Dahl’s work but instead the unhappy family saga that consumed much of the final decade-plus of his life.
The facts, as presented in David Bauer’s article in the April 1979 issue of D Magazine (one of the 40 greatest stories we’ve ever published), are that Dahl’s daughter Gloria and her husband, Ted Akin, filed for guardianship of the then-83-year-old Dahl in April 1978. They said they’d done it because of their concerns about Dahl’s failing mental competency in business matters. Dahl believed they were motivated by greed, looking to take control of the millions of dollars in the trust that had been established in the name of his late wife, Lillie, of which Dahl himself was the sole trustee. They also were seeking to prevent him from marrying Joan Renfro, a much-younger woman whom they suspected of being only after Dahl’s money.Read More