As the saying goes — everything is bigger in Texas — including the problems plaguing our fractured nation's justice system. Texas and Galveston County arguably accrues more problems and fewer solutions than neighboring counties and states.
One can debate about why that is, but here are the facts: Texas has the highest rate of wrongful convictions and of incarcerations in our country. The Galveston County jail is so overcrowded that defendants — presumed innocent citizens — have been transported to other county jails while their cases linger.
Other defendants remain in jail, unable to post exorbitant bail amounts commonly set at $500,000 to $1 million, costing tax dollars, loss of tax base, loss of local income, jobs, homes, individual mental and physical deterioration, often culminating in dismissals and resolutions once rejected by the District Attorney's Office months earlier.
The HOPE Drug Court, an alternative to incarceration and recovery, continues to be underrepresented and underutilized leaving unfilled vacancies as the District Attorney's Office denies admissions. I have represented clients in every one of the above situations here in Galveston in the last two years alone.