Unsurprisingly, District Judge Must Warn Rick Perry Not To Threaten Grand Jury

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Of course Rick Perry's trying to throw shade on the grand jury that returned an indictment for his efforts to coerce Travis County DA Rosemary Lehmberg to resign.

This week a state district judge warned Perry not to threaten the jury or anyone else.

It's no surprise that Perry holds such little respect for the legal process that currently surrounds him that he's trying to make a farce of it all, using it to fundraise for RickPAC and malign the head of the Public Integrity Unit.

From The Statesman:

    Judge Julie Kocurek of the 390th District Court, a Democrat, said Perry's Saturday statement, issued a day after the indictment, could be construed as a threat and possible violation of the law. Kocurek, as the administrative presiding judge of all criminal courts in the county, said that “no one is above the law,” and the public needs to know that grand jurors are legally protected from any threat.

    “I have a duty to make sure that our members of the grand jury are protected,” Kocurek said. “I am defending the integrity of our grand jury system.”

    The judge said that Perry might have made a veiled threat when he said: “I am confident we will ultimately prevail, that this farce of a prosecution will be revealed for what it is, and that those responsible will be held to account.”

    The only people that Perry could be referring to as being accountable are the grand jurors, judge and prosecutor, Kocurek said.

    The Texas Penal Code that outlaws obstruction and retaliation says that anyone who “intentionally or knowingly harms or threatens to harm” a grand juror faces a second degree felony, which is punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

Kocurek recused herself from the original case. The special prosecutor appointed is a Republican.

Meanwhile, the jurors themselves are rightfully insulted that Perry should impugn their work, calling his remarks “disrespectful.”

For a guy selling tee shirts with his own mug shot on them to raise money for his federal PAC, would you expect anything else?

About Author

Katherine Haenschen

Katherine Haenschen is a PhD candidate at the University of Texas, where she studies political participation on digital media. She has previously managed successful candidate, issue, voter registration, and GOTV campaigns in Austin. In addition to serving as the president of Austin Young Democrats, she is also UCONN's #1 fan in Texas.

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