How all of Waco must laugh at the Constitution. How all its bolo tied mandarins must giggle at the men who have died and suffered in the last 240 years for the silly notion that the natural condition of man is to be free.
This morning, a mere 47 days after Dallas Attorney Clint Broden filed a motion to remove a buffoon named Walter H. “Pete” Peterson from presiding over any further proceedings involving his client, Matt Clendennen, a retired judge named Joe Carroll, photo above, granted the motion.
In his motion for recusal, Broden argued that the buffoon had violated the law when he rubber stamped 177 criminal complaints that were identical except for a blank space that could be used to fill in any name – like Benedict Arnold or Charles Manson or Daffy Duck. Peterson broke the law when he allowed the charging officer, a piece of work named Manuel Chavez who wouldn’t have known any of the men he accused if he fell over them, to just swear that a full ream of affidavits was the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
Broden argued that the $1 million bonds Peterson set for all the defendants were oppressive and unreasonable. Broden also complained that the August 10 date Peterson set for Clendennen’s “examining trial,” comparable to what most states call a probable cause hearing, essentially undermined the whole point of an examining trial – which is to see if probable cause exists to prosecute. Peterson later refused to expedite Clendennen’s examining trial without explanation.
Broden also complained that Peterson is “not neutral and detached.” He wrote, “It appears that Judge Peterson was at the scene of the alleged incident related to which Mr. C1endennen was arrested. Indeed, upon information and belief, Judge Peterson,
a former Department of Public Safety Trooper, may have injected himself into the law enforcement investigation.”
Broden also accused Peterson of colluding with the McLennan County District Attorney’s Office in choosing the date for Clendennen’s examining trial.
Peterson is self-evidently biased. He told both the Waco Tribune Herald and the Los Angeles Times that he set all the bonds at $1 million to “send a message” because many of arrested “were from out of town.” And, his actions arrantly violate the Cannons of Judicial Ethics. Broden has filed a complaint against Peterson with the State Commission on Judicial Conduct.
And the result of this seven week long legal dance is nothing. C1endennen’s examining trial was not rescheduled this morning. It is still scheduled for the second Monday in August. A regional judge named Billy Ray Stubblefield will now decide who will preside over it. Perhaps he will select Judge Roy Bean or Popeye the Sailor Man. Clendennon and Broden are still forbidden to publically discuss Clendennon’s case. And today’s ruling will have absolutely no effect whatsoever on the cases of the other 176 defendants charged by Peterson.