HCCLA filed its Amicus brief in support of David Dow in his fight to overturn his suspension which was illegally handed down by the Court of Criminal Appeals without authority or due process.
view/download amicus here: HCCLA Filed Dow Amicus
Reprinted substance of amicus brief:
Now comes, the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association, by and through the undersigned attorney and files this Amicus brief in support of David Dow, Relator-Petitioner and would show this Court the following:
Statement of Interests
The Harris County Criminal Lawyer’s Association (HCCLA) is a bar association of over 700 lawyers in Harris County, Texas who practice criminal defense law. HCCLA is the largest local criminal defense bar in the country. HCCLA’s mission is to assist, support, and protect the criminal defense practitioner in the zealous defense of individuals and their constitutional rights. It is further HCCLA’s mission to educate and inform the general public regarding the administration of criminal justice of the need for an independent, ethical, and professional criminal defense bar.
Statement in Support
HCCLA is concerned that the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals (CCA) action suspending Relator-Petitioner David Dow (Dow) from appearing before it, exceeds its statutory and legal authority to discipline attorney, and constitute a chilling threat to a small segment of the bar in Texas who represent death row inmates. HCCLA believes that sanctioning Dow outside the scope of its power without referring the disciplinary matter to the appropriate court, the CCA has deprived Dow of his constitutional rights under the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The Fifth and Sixth Amendments and due process provisions of the United States Constitution are applicable in contempt proceedings. Dunn v. United States, 442 U.S. 100 (1979) HCCLA believes that the action by the CCA conflicts with the Supreme Court of the United States decision in Gentile v. State Bar of Nevada, 501 U.S. 1030 (1991), which held that an attorney has a liberty interest in the practice of law.
HCCLA joins the brief of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association and National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers Association in their statement of support for Dow. HCCLA believes that this Court should grant mandamus in this case to preserve its jurisdiction conveyed to it by the legislature to regulate the practice of law in this State and to ensure Dow is accorded due process as guaranteed by the Texas and United States Constitution.
/s/ Carmen Roe
PRESIDENT, HARRIS COUNTY CRIMINAL LAWYERS ASSOCIATION (HCCLA)