Key Judge’s Role In Evidence Cover-Up

THUGS ARE ONE THING; THEY CAN HANDLE THEM, BUT I GUESS WE JUST KIND OF SCARED THEM… – Paul Landers, political activist, business owner, member of The Escondidos, Twin Peaks defendant

Waco – At the heart of an alleged criminal conspiracy to withhold key exculpatory evidence in the Twin Peaks cases is the man in the cat bird seat.

A supplemental motion to recuse 19th Criminal District Court Judge Ralph T. Strother filed on Friday, September 1 – after the McLennan County District Clerk’s Office had closed at five minutes to five p.m. on the day the long Labor Day weekend  begins – contains the threads of the story.

Filed by Houston defense attorney Casie Gotro on behalf of her client Bandido Jake Carrizal, president of the Dallas Chapter of that organization, the instrument speaks volumes about what a vast conspiracy of public officials have struggled since May 17, 2015 to conceal about the events that led to 9 killings, 20 persons wounded and the arrests of 177 persons on an an identical charge stated in the vaguest of terms – and the concealed exculpatory evidence that subsequent investigation revealed.

Timing is everything, and when investigator Kevin Fisk was unable to gain access to the McLennan County Courthouse prior to closing time, Ms. Gotro directed him to arrange service on the principals of the case by U.S. Postal Service, return receipt requested.

He was able to do it at a self-service kiosk located at the Waco Post Office on the corner of Sanger Avenue at Hwy. 6.

The improvised approach is legal, for the law requires such a motion must be made a minimum of 10 days before a trial is to begin, and the jury trial of Jake Carrizal is set for Tuesday, September 12. Thus, the motion states it is “timely filed” in anticipation of any argument to the contrary.

When a bailiff handed Strother the motion during the jury examination hearing earlier in the day, the act by Carrizal’s defense team stopped the music, under the law.

According to Texas Rule of Civil Procedure 18a, a judge subjected to such a motion must request an administrative judge to hear or designate another judge to hear the pleadings; if not, he must forward all statements to the regional administrative judge, and “except for good cause, the judge shall make no further orders and shall take no further action” – pending a hearing.

If he does so in defiance of the law, that action is void, according to Brosseau v Ranzau, 28 S.W. 3d 235, 238, according to the supplemental motion.

By absolutely refusing to “hear all legal arguments and factual proffers from the defense [he is] thereby allowing the State’s arguments and proffers to go uncontroverted…”

Quite simply, the motion alleges:


That is a major bad act under the terms of Canon 3 (B)(1), Texas Code of Judicial Conduct, and never mind the Michael Morton law.

But it’s the evidence withheld by law enforcement officials, clerks, technicians, and contractors that tells the tale, all of which is meticulously documented in the motion.

At the top of the pyramid sits Judge Strother, whose “conduct also deprives the defendant (Bandido Carrizal) his right to make a record and preserve any errors for appellate review.”

That places a defendant in the same position as if he pled guilty and waived all his rights to appeal – without the permission of the Court of original jurisdiction. No bueno.

Heading the list are nine audio recordings of witness statements made by DPS detective on the day of the legal disaster at Twin Peaks and an additional hour of video footage from a police car.

Through the investigation conducted by the law office of Casie Gotro by Kevin Fisk, a former Waco arson investigator whose sanity when questioned by city officials with a motive to do a similar criminal coverup of a murder conspiracy led to his resignation under duress, the defense “independently corroborated” the existence of the exculpatory material, and obtained it.


In fact, he has informed Ms. Gotro on the record that he has no intention of doing any such thing.

“Rather he continues to blindly accept the State’s illogical and preposterous excuses,” thus “failing to enforce constitutional protections” on four separate occasions.

The motion concludes:


Perhaps most interesting is the list of witnesses or their designees subpoenaed to produce items of evidence who then failed to do so.

One of them, Sheriff Parnell McNamara, did not even appear in response to the summons, nor did he, like Texas Department of Public Safety Director Steve McCraw, have the requested items, allegedly seized by Deputies on the fateful day of May 17, 2015, delivered to the defense.

No one was required to produce the items subpoenaed, and Judge Strother did not allow the defense counsel to call them to the witness stand in order to show through direct examination the cause of their defiance of the subpoenas.

McCraw is the subject of multiple such orders seeking audio and video surveillance, ballistics reports and witness statements.

Jason Stolle, an Information Tech of the Waco Police Department is listed.

Kourtney McClain of PETCO is sought for the surveillance camera footage shot at the time of what the mainstream media has chosen to call a “melee,” in actuality a hail of small arms fire, much of it from the muzzles of weapons whose reports are suppressed by silencers.

Ryan Holt, Waco chief of police, is sought for digital dupes of encrypted communications, especially of “Channel D” directing officers where to deploy and monitoring their maneuvers during the fire fight.

Other Waco Police officials sought include Liz Rohrer, records supervisor; Detective Jill Rogers; Sergeant Keith Vaughn; and Detective Sherry Kingrey.

Peter Caldwell, the general manager of Don Carlos Restaurant, is subpoenaed to furnish video from the establishment’s closed circuit system.

The subpoenaes carry severe criminal penalties for a willful refusal to comply with their requirements.

Exhibits attached to the motion contain the particulars about alleged exculpatory evidence obtained from witness statements and copies of official police and DPS reports regarding the material.

One may review the entire document by merely clicking the hyperlink below:


A Tigress At The Temple Barre Ambushes The Judge

Handwritten motion gives the reasons for Judge Strother’s Recusal 

Waco – Like a prowling tigress slowly circling a quiet village, the lady barrister Casie Gotro lured her prey with papers of the court.

She built her trap with words and facts, and as she worked, she tempted 19th Criminal District Judge Ralph T. Strother to underestimate her capacity for the logic behind legal principles – until it was too late.

When she stood inside the well of the Court, past the Temple Barre, she allowed him to speak to more than 200 prospective jurymen and women, and then by filing a motion supported by a legal memorandum used to persuade Judge James Morgan to grant recusal motions by three other defendants, she caused a bailiff to hand him an instrument so keenly whetted it made his face flush, sweat to pop out on his forehead, and resulted in a series of rapidly cycling grimaces that made his visage terrible to behold.

Four large-screen television screens blew his facial tics up to at least five times actual size, and hundreds of ordinary people sat observing in a disintersted and detached way as they headed out for a long holiday weekend at summer’s end.

The motion is scrawled in her own hand, something the highest courts in the nation have ruled is no handicap in pre-trial proceedings in courts of original jurisdiction.

Quite simply, such motions may not be rejected because they are “inartfully drawn.” It’s not the steak; in this case, it’s the sizzle.

With great economy of words, Ms. Gotro informed the Court that the Defendant, Jake Carrizal files his motion for the following reasons:

The Court has:

  1. assisted the State in prosecuting the Defendant;
  2. acted to prevent Counsel from accessing evidence, addressing the Court, making legal arguments, preserving the record, and;
  3. “stated without reading any motion to recuse the Court would not be granted;”
  4. and “refused without reading any of the 18 subpoenaes to enforce or order compliance” by those so subpoenaed.

“For these reasons, Judge Stother should be recused.”


Casie Gotro

Defense Counsel

So mote it be.

  • The Legendary

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McLennan County Justice Leaves Venire Laughing

A Waco patrolman holds an assault rifle on a wounded biker who bled out because he said he would kill the men trying to take him to aid if they moved him on May 17, 2015 at Twin Peaks Restaurant

Waco – The four big screen television monitors attached to the massive support columns that stud the auxiliary courtroom in the McLennan County Courthouse Annex building traced with amazing clarity the facial reactions of Judge Ralph T. Strother.

A bailiff had just handed him a freshly file-marked writ in the middle of the beginning of his spiel to a capacity gallery of veniremen from a special panel of 600 about the qualifications to serve as a juror in the first of the 155 Twin Peaks murder conspiracy cases, that of Dallas Bandidos Chapter President Jacob Carrizal.

He noted that nothing they would hear today would serve as evidence in the trial, nor would anything they have read in the media, and then the hammer dropped, and he began to read.

As he paged through the document, his chagrin became – in real time – more and more agitated, and in a voice that betrayed hurt and surprise, he quickly snapped, “I wish to see counsel, the defendant, and the court reporter in the Jury Room.”

Authorities charged Carrizal with the identical offense that all 177 arrested on May 17, 2015, at the massacre that left 9 dead, 20 wounded, and a nation reeling in shock at the televised bloodshed. The event had been planned as a simple legislative update meeting for bikers from the Confederation of Clubs and Independents to learn all about open carry handgun legislation, motorcycle safety funds, and the prospects for bills pondered by Texas legislators then in session to curb motorcycle profiling by police.

Authorities charged total of 177 persons, some them suffering from gunshot wounds, with the offense of engaging in organized criminal activity.

That offense carries a possible sentence of from 25 years to 99 upon conviction. A superseding indictment of Carrizal added an additional count of directing the activities of an organized criminal enterprise, an offense that carries a penalty of not less than 30 years confinement or more than 99.

The bloodshed at the awful incident occurred when he and a small group of fellow Bandidos, arrived only to be ambushed by gun-wielding bikers flying patches of the Cossacks Motorcycle Club and their support clubs. Police arrayed in the pattern of an L-shaped ambush cut down the shooters who had wounded victims with handguns with suppressed fire from assault rifles, not all of which have been identified by ballistic examples.

The Texas Department of Public Safety is withholding evidence of its analysis, and that is one of the reasons Carrizal’s defense counsel, Casie Gotro, is seeking his recusal. He did not order some 12 witnesses or their designees, including the Director the DPS, to furnish the subpoenaed items, nor did he allow her to place them on the witness stand during a pre-trial hearing to learn just why the information is not forthcoming.

In a recent status conference, she declared that she cannot give her client adequate counsel in a court where she is facing two prosecutors – both the DA and the Criminal District Judge – the court of original jurisdiction.

Strother has been recused in three other cases by the order of visiting Judge James Morgan only this week following a hearing two weeks ago in which the judge ruled that to the standards of the man in the street, he is “just not being fair.”

There are numerous items in the motion of complaint to have him removed from the Carrizal Case, which at this time is not available.

We will update this story when it is available by hyperlinking the text of the recusal motion to this story.

As the meeting reached only a few minutes in duration, 54th Criminal District Judge Matt Johnson arrived and entered the closed-door meeting. He remained inside the chamber only a few minutes before he swept back out of the room again.

When the bailiff intoned the courtesy announcement, “All rise,” the gallery of about 250 persons burst into rippling laughter.

As the crowded room slowly cleared, Ms. Gotro finished initialing and signing various court papers handed her by a staff member of the District Clerk’s Office. She raised up from the defense table and waved her hand in a sweeping gesture, saying , “Happy birthday!”

Judge Strother disappeared into a conference room.

Seated in the gallery with Kevin Fisk, the private investigator who is working for Carrizal’s defense counsel, “Double D” David Devereaux of the Motorcycle Profiling Project remarked, “You would think that having been recused in three other cases, he (Strother) would recuse himself, without going through all this.

Prospective panelists have been directed to return Setember 12 at 8:30 a.m. to fill out juror questionnaires that will determine “how you feel” about certain items, according to Judge Strother. He had earlier noted in his remarks to the venire that “there is nothing wrong” about having “strong opinions” or “strong feelings.”

When it comes to the jurors’ questionnaire, he said, “There are no wrong answers.


Jacob Carrizal’s Motion to Recuse 10th District Judge RalphT. Strother: