Issue No. 94
November 19, 2018
Thanksgiving is almost here and I want to thank my amazing wife, Toni, for all she does for me. Toni tolerates all the time I put into my various crackpot endeavors and she puts up with my love of college football and great interest in late Victorian England. Toni is my editor-in-chief and she is why I am not allowed to write,"Judge xxx will be missed about as much as a case of explosive diarrhea." She tones down my attempts at humor, questions my reasoning and makes me a better writer. I am in love, I am eternally grateful and I am so thankful to share the adventure of life with this smart, beautiful lady and all of the two and four legged critters Toni has filled our house and land with.

Click here to download the new Family Court Staff Rosters (see complete story below).

In this issue....

  • New Family Court Judges Select Their A.J.'s and Staffs
  • Law Enforcement Raids the Office of Jared Woodfill
  • CPS Sanctions Case Should Inspire Us All

Charley Prine - Good Riddance to a Bigoted, Unhinged Bully

Outgoing Judge Charley Prine is busy showing his lack of class and judicial temperament following his election loss.

Click here to see the Fox26 News story about how Prine yelled at Angela Graves-Harrington (who defeated him) and how he threatened her with trespass charges if she came into "his" court's back halls again (she was in the hallway only because the bailiffs had taken her back there!).

Prine is also remembering those who were not nice to him during the election. During a crowded docket call, Prine announced to the world that he “will not hear any cases that Mr. Enos is a party to because Mr. Enos has made it clear through his blog that I have a conflict of interest." Prine told my associate and opposing counsel that if they could not work out their differences on an entry the case would be dismissed. On another of my firm's cases, Prine kept my associate at the bench, told our client to go sit down, and reiterated he was not going to hear any cases involving me because of what I had written about him prior to the election. I never suggested Prine should not hear my cases when I wrote about him and other defeated GOP judges giving money to the mysterious Hotze-Woodfill company or when I questioned his hard-to-believe tale about a campaign website he claimed he could not change.

Most of the defeated judges have the dignity and sense to cooperate with their successors. Even Lisa Millard is doing a great job at assisting with the transition in her court. It is a shame Charley never learned the lesson every Little League player is taught about how to handle defeat with class and grace.
 Plea For Uniform Family Court Procedures

Please join me in encouraging our new judges-elect to adopt uniform procedures in all family courts. If you are tired of consulting a chart to see which judge requires mediation before temporary orders on certain types of cases, I suggest that you contact our judges-elect and ask them to all adopt the procedures of Judge Maldonado in the 507th, at least to start in January. The judges may have different times for docket calls and different days when they hear CPS cases and enforcement actions, but they really should all follow the same basic procedures. Click here to read the well written and thorough procedures of the 507th (it should say a "four" hour parenting class, not an "eight" hour class).


Farewell to Stan Lee

Stan Lee, the legendary writer, editor and publisher of Marvel Comics died last week at age 95. Lee created or co-created Black Panther, Spider-Man, the X-Men, the Mighty Thor, Iron Man, the Fantastic Four, the Incredible Hulk, Daredevil and Ant-Man, among many other characters. Lee gave his Marvel superheroes personalities and frailties, not just power. Until then, comic book heroes, like Superman, were square and well-adjusted, but Lee's heroes had human foibles and hang-ups. Peter Parker (Spider-Man), for example, was shy and awkward, did not know how to drive and was confused about dating. Lee's villians were psychologically complex and fun. Stan Lee was also known for his cameo appearances in Marvel movies. He had fun in life and he had a huge impact on popular culture.
Stan Lee introduced Black super heroes to comic books and he fought prejudice and intolerance through comic books and newspaper strips. For many years, Lee also penned a monthly comics column, "Stan's Soapbox," signing off with his signature phrase, "Excelsior!"

Please take a look at my website dedicated to the 2020 Presidential campaign and the race for the Democratic nomination: . We are on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter as well.
I may not win every case (even if in my heart I expect to). I just want an efficient system in which my client gets a fair hearing before a judge who works hard, knows the law, and does not play favorites. I also expect judges to appoint qualified amicus attorneys who zealously look after children (and who actually personally visit their minor clients in their homes). Is that asking too much? Stay tuned.
Greg Enos
The Enos Law Firm
The Enos Law Firm
  17207 Feather Craft Lane, Webster, Texas 77598
 (281) 333-3030
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New Family Court Judges Select Their A.J.'s and Staffs
The judges-elect of the Harris County family courts have selected their associate judges, court coordinators and court reporters. A few are familiar faces but most are new and some are not very well known. Click here to download Tom King's list of the courts' new staffs.

I could joke that my nine year old brown leather dress shoes have more courtroom experience than a few of these new Associate Judges, but we all need to withhold judgment on these new, young judges until they have had a little time to learn their jobs and demonstrate their intelligence, knowledge of the law and common sense.

The names of some of the AJ's listed below in blue are hyperlinked to biography pages with photographs so that you can learn a little about them.

We now will have ten family court judges who are as diverse as the population of Houston and their AJ's are just as ethnically representative. I applaud that change.

There will be some continuity. Judge-elect Longino is keeping Judge Moore's excellent AJ and Coordinator, Judge Cooper and Rosie Diaz. The 311th's Coordinator, Victor Almendarez, will be working for Judge Berg in the 247th. Deborah Patterson will remain as AJ of the 257th. Pamela Hunt from the 247th will be the Coordinator of the 257th. Judge Conrad Moren will be the AJ for the 247th for the first two months until Beth Arnold takes over on March 1, 2018.

The selection of AJ's from law firms can create a conflict, at least for a while. I assume that Bruce Baughman will not handle cases in the 312th as long as his daughter is the AJ there. It will be interesting to see how long Dennis Slate's law firm is unable to practice in the 309th after the hiring of his associate, Shailey Gupta-Brietzke, as the AJ.

Once phone numbers and court locations are confirmed, a handy court chart will be shared with you. Tom King , whose dog reportedly wears a laminated sandwich sign advertising King's unique mediation-by-video conference practice, will soon have one of his useful and very colorful court charts for me to share with you. My less colorful chart will not be issued until docket times, mediation requirements, etc. have been decided by the new judges. I am sure the HBA and others will also be printing court charts. We all are going to need a cheat sheet for a while as we try to remember who the hell is the judge now of each court.

Here are the staffs just announced for the family courts:
245th Tristan H. Longino
Associate Judge: Jim Cooper
Coordinator: Rosie Diaz
Court Reporter: Barbara Nagji

246th Angela Graves-Harrington
Associate Judge: Yahaira Quezada
Coordinator: Astrid Rivas
Court Reporter: Delores Johnson

247th Janice Berg
Associate Judge: Conrad Moren through 2/28/18
Bethany Arnold starting 3/1/18
Coordinator: Victor Almendarez
Court Reporter: Karen deShetler

257th Sandra Peake
Associate Judge: Deborah Patterson
Coordinator: Pamela Hunt
Court Reporter: Angela McBride

308th Gloria Lopez
Associate Judge: Ryan Salfiti
Coordinator: Jeanadrea Beard
Court Reporter: Phyllis Gonzales

309th Linda Dunson
Associate Judge: Shailey Gupta-Brietzke
Coordinator: Molly Mai
Court Reporter: Ehdi Sepulveda

310th Sonya Heath
Associate Judge: Charles Collins
Coordinator: Melinda Schmidt
Court Reporter: Leticia Salas

311th Germaine Tanner
Associate Judge: Frank Pierce
Coordinator: Cindy Del Rio
Court Reporter: Chelsea Allen

312th Chip Wells
Associate Judge: Kimberly Baughman
Coordinator: Laura Hersch
Court Reporter: Karen Bauer

280th Barbara Stalder
Coordinator: Elsa Ramirez
Court Reporter: Jill Bartek

Law Enforcement Raids the Office of Jared Woodfill
Jared Woodfill has spent the last few years acting super "Christian" and attacking the LGBT community. How blissfully ironic it would be if our lesbian District Attorney ends up prosecuting Woodfill for violating the law and number eight of the Ten Commandments. Woodfill's law office was raided last week by District Attorney investigators.

Click here to read the search warrant application and the affidavit which lays out the allegations against Woodfill. These allegations, if true, could result in the loss of Woodfill's law license and in prison time. Woodfill denies that he has misused clients' trust funds.
Why would a big-shot, high dollar lawyer who was making so much money off his actual or perceived influence with Republic judges allegedly steal from his clients' trust accounts? We do know that earlier this year Woodfill's landlord locked his firm out of their offices for failure to pay rent. The notice below was taped to the glass entry walls of Woodfill's offices in April after the locks were changed.
Click here to read the Houston Chronicle story on the raid, with photographs and video.

Obviously, the State Bar is interested in what Woodfill has been doing. Last month, the Bar issued a public reprimand against him. I understand there is at least one more pending discplinary suit that the Bar has filed against Woodfill. I have also been told there are yet more former clients with serious concerns about how their trust funds were utilized. Again, Woodfill denies any wrongdoing.

I am probably the last person on the planet to defend Woodfill, but the way the raid on his office was conducted does disturb me. The news media was tipped off so they could film the raid at a time when Jared had not been criminally charged. The DA staff did not deal with the boxes of documents in the file rooms or lawyers' offices where they were kept. Instead, they moved their work to the lobby where the TV cameras filmed them through the glass walls. I am told that the DA's office took much more than financial records and instead took 60 boxes of entire case files and even clients' confidential medical records. We all as lawyers should be a little concerned about how this raid was carried out. If the police, for example, were to raid my law office looking for evidence of Big Foot porn, there would be no reason to seize entire client files and so invade my clients' privacy and deprive me of the ability to represent them before I am even charged.

NOTE: I used a made up hypothetical in the story above. I do not write or consume Big Foot erotica, but shockingly there is such a genre of fiction. Click here to read about the Republican (of course) candidate for Congress who was elected despite being accused of involvement with sexy Sasquatch porn. Click here for reviews of the more popular examples of this sort of fiction, including the classic, Bigfoot's Gay! by Candy Banger. Had Woodfill or his partner in hate, Steven Hotze, ever read that book, they would have also been campaigning to keep the American Yeti out of all restrooms.
CPS Sanctions Case Should Inspire Us All
We all should be inspired by the dogged and brilliant legal work done by Dennis Slate and Stephanie Proffitt, which resulted in $127,000 in sanctions against CPS (Texas Department of Family and Protective Services).

Click here to read the Houston Chronicle story about this case, which should teach CPS a few important lessons, including:
  • Do not alter computer records to match a removal affidavit.
  • Do not intentionally fail to turn over incriminating text messages in response to discovery requests.
  • Do not say over and over when you testify,"I don't know" and certainly avoid situations where case workers have to plead the "fifth"" to avoid admitting to perjury.
  • Do not fail to check in on children for over three weeks and then do not seek an emergency removal action just to avoid looking bad to a supervisor.
  • Do consider alternative medical explanations for children's injuries.
  • Never act so badly that a judge calls you "dishonest" and your removal of a child from parents "malicious."

Click here to read part of the transcript of Dennis Slate's cross-examination of a CPS worker and click here to see the proposed order that summarizes what CPS did. I will post a copy of the final signed sanctions order once I get it.
Dennis Slate Stephanie Proffitt
CPS claims it cannot be sanctioned because of sovereign immunity. Click here to read a 2011 Houston Chronicle story about the same lawyers, Slate and Proffitt, winning $32,000 in sanctions from CPS for very similar conduct. CPS paid those sanctions in 2011, but seems to have forgotten that lesson.

I also need to acknowledge Juvenile Court Judge Mike Schneider for doing his job and dropping the hammer on CPS in this case. Judge Schneider stood out in a good way in the cesspool of corruption and incompetence that was our juvenile courts before the Democratic sweep. We all should be proud of his ruling in this case and it is a shame we are losing him (although I predict his successor will be really good).

This sort of work done by Slate and Proffitt is why many of us became lawyers and their achievement should inspire us. Not every super hero was created by Stan Lee. Some heroes and heroines are attorneys willing to take on the powerful to prevent or correct injustice. Good job Dennis and Stephanie!
Thank you for your support! Together We Can Make Our Profession Better and Our Courts More Fair
Attorney Greg Enos has been through his own divorce and child custody battle (he won) and understands what his clients are going through. Enos graduated from the University of Texas Law School and was a successful personal injury attorney in Texas City before he decided his true calling was to help families in divorce and child custody cases. Greg Enos is active in politics and in Clear Lake area charities. He has served as President of the Bay Area Bar Association and President of the Board of Interfaith Caring Ministries. The Enos Law Firm serves clients in Galveston County, Brazoria County and Harris County, Texas.
Greg Enos
Board Certified in Family Law, Texas Board of Legal Specialization
The Enos Law Firm
www. divorce
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