Monday, October 20, 2008

Murder Trial in Death of Warden Begins

Over a year and a half ago one of our Texas Game Wardens was killed by a poacher. I commented on the reporting of this incident with "Poacher Kills Game Warden".

The case has finally come to trial, and it is the first "Death penalty case is the first in decades for Wharton County."

From the Houston Chronicle

By Peggy O'Hare

A Wharton County jury will begin hearing testimony today in the trial of a man accused of killing a Texas Parks and Wildlife Department game warden, marking the county's first death penalty trial in nearly 30 years.

James Garrett Freeman, 27, of Lissie could be sentenced to death if convicted of capital murder. He is accused of shooting game warden Justin P. Hurst, 34, of El Campo, following a lengthy police chase last year.

A jury of nine women and three men will gather in state District Judge Randy Clapp's court for the trial, which is expected to last about three weeks.
This is a pretty cut and dried case. The only thing the Defense is going to attempt is to get a sentence of life instead of the needle.

From the Defense attorney:

Freeman, a welder with no history of serious crimes, did not intend to shoot anyone, said his attorney, Stanley Schneider.

"The bottom line — any way you look at it — this is a tragedy because you have two families that have been destroyed," Schneider said. "How do you explain the unexplainable?"
It is pretty easy to explain. Your client got caught poaching, attempted to get away, when caught decided to shoot it out with the good guys. One of the good guys died. Your client is getting the needle, the sooner the better.

So what was this goblin poaching when all this started?

A dead opossum was later found in the area where Freeman had been parked when he first drew a game warden's attention.
To tell you the truth, I don't know the fine for shooting a opossum from the road at night is in Texas, but this particular goblin decided to kill instead of facing the music. There will be no tears shed at the JR household when he is put down.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I totally agree!! He was found guilty! Just waiting on whether it is the needle or life.

And the fine for poaching from the roadside is a class c misdemeanor (about a $200-$250 fine first go around).