Until 1990 I was engaged in the general practice of criminal law. I have practiced in state and federal courts in Texas, Louisiana, and Tennessee. I have filed dozens of appeals in most of the appellate courts of Texas. I have been licensed in and have appeared before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, and the United States Supreme Court. I appeared before the United States Supreme Court on March 1, 1988. I appeared in an en banc argument before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in 1998. I have tried capital murder cases in state court. I have tried many different types of cases in federal courts, including a five-week federal bank fraud case which ended in a not guilty verdict for my client. I have tried many jury trial in Bexar and the surrounding counties.
However, in 1992 and 1993 I became a board certified specialist in criminal law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and a board certified criminal trial advocate of the National Board of Trial Advocacy. Along with other lawyers near this time, I help to found the National College for DUI Defense, and I began restricting my practice to DWI defense. I was the founding president of the San Antonio Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, and I have served as a director and committee member of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association over the past 25 years.
In the course of practicing DWI defense I have been responsible for precedent-setting opinions which have changed the practice of DWI prosecution and defense such as Bagheri v. State, 119 S.W.3d 755 (Tex.Cr.App. 2003); Mata v. State, 122 S.W.3d 813 (Tex.Cr.App. 2003); and Hartman v. State, 946 S.W.2d 60 (Tex.Cr.App. 1997). I have been a frequent lecturer on DWI topics in Texas seminars.
I remain current in DWI defense issues, and in July of 2012, I completed a hands-on 40-hour course in forensic chromatography at the Axion Training Institute, Inc at the Analytical Laboratories, Inc. in Chicago, Illinois. After attending the course, I litigated a standard discovery order in blood draw DWI cases in San Antonio, Texas. The order has been adopted by the courts of Bexar County, Texas. Additionally following the United States Supreme Court decision in Missouri v. McNeely in April 2013, I have developed and distributed a motion to suppress blood searches among the local bar in San Antonio for use in all blood draw DWI cases.
I co-founded and operate Education Forensics, LLC, a training lab for blood alcohol testing in criminal cases. We purchased the same state-of-the-art equipment which is used by the forensic labs in Texas and around the nation. The equipment is maintained by Perkin Elmer, Inc., the manufacturer. Dr. Thomas Pittman and I work together in the effort to promote training in good scientific techniques. Good laboratory techniques are essential for valid results, and Dr. Pittman and I have found that forensic labs in Texas do not always use the accepted scientific techniques which are essential for any testing lab. Having this knowledge has given me an advantage in my cases because some of the laboratory analysts are not very well trained. This fact has been made obvious by the United States Supreme Court decision in Bullcoming v. New Mexico. The Court held that the lab analyst who did the blood testing in the case on trial must appear in court personally so that his/her technique may be cross-examined by the attorneys.
I enjoy learning about the science involved in DWI defense and maintaining current knowledge of case law and common daily practices in courts. However, my client's futures, feelings, and fears are on my mind constantly. I encourage my clients to meet with me whenever it is necessary to resolve issues in life which are caused by these unfortunate events of being faced with a DWI charge.