At the end of June McLennan County, the ethical cesspool that surrounds Waco, hired a good old local boy attorney named David Deaconson to represent Justice of the Peace W.H. “Pete” Peterson.
Peterson is the mooncalf who decided to charge 177, or 182, people he knew nothing about with engaging in organized criminal activity in order “to send a message.” No. No rational person knew what he was talking about. In an interview with the Waco Tribune-Herald, he sort of explained, “We had nine people killed in our community. These people just came in, and most of them were from out of town. Very few of them were from in town.”
There is no need to speculate why Peterson might need a lawyer. Waco will explain that very soon, right after it releases the video and ballistics evidence and the autopsy reports.
At the time the County hired Deaconson (photo above), he claimed defense lawyers were “harassing” Peterson. He announced he was giving the county a break on price by charging only $250 an hour instead of his usual $280. Deaconson is also the City Attorney for the grim Waco suburb of Lacy Lakeview and an adjunct professor for Baylor University School of Law where he teaches the art of the “mock trial.”
According to the Tribune-Herald, Deaconson is serving as a “liaison” between “biker defense attorneys” and “the courts.” Whatever that turns out to mean, it may come as a surprise to most of the defense attorneys. Apparently, one of his several official roles is to be a sort of general spokesman on the Twin Peaks case. You know, what is true and not. What is good law and what is poppycock. Who is naughty and who is nice. That sort of thing.
Tuesday he told the local paper about a retired judge “from Travis County” who may preside over the “examining trials” of a score of the bikers arrested May 17. One of them is Matt Clendennen, who is also threatening to sue most of official Waco in federal court.
Clendennen and his lawyer, Clint Broden, are forbidden by court order to talk about Clendennen’s case but “Pete” Peterson’s lawyer is not. Tuesday the Tribune reported Deaconson told the judge who will appoint Peterson’s successor “that an out-of-town judge might quell more criticism about what the bikers and their supporters are calling the unfair McLennan County justice system.”
Deaconson said, “If the administrative judge has graciously offered to give us assistance as far as a judge on all of this, I just think if we bring in one who can devote his time, we can get the process on the examining trial side done much more efficiently and there isn’t any concern, be it from the media, or the public or whomever, (sic) that the county is totally trying to scheme against these people.” He also said examining trials are “not needed.”
Broden read Deaconson’s interview in the paper along with everybody else. Yesterday he filed a supplement to his motion to lift his gag order that complained: “Mr. Clendennen and his counsel are subject to the gag order entered by the Judge of the 54th District Court, Matt Johnson, and cannot publicly speak to this matter of grave public concern to our justice system. Nevertheless, the agent for Judge Peterson is permitted to give statements to the press at will.”
“Moreover, Mr. Clendennen strongly disagrees with the public comments by Judge Peterson’s agent that implies that a belief that ‘the county is totally trying to scheme against these people’ is unfounded and that ‘examining trials are not needed unless defendants are in jail and seeking another way out.’ … this is yet another example of why the gag order in this case is unworkable…. Mr. Clendennen is unable to respond to any of these comments. For example, in this instance, Mr. Clendennen is denied free speech rights to address why he is seeking an examining trial despite the fact that he is not ‘in jail and seeking another way out.’”