November 20, 2008
Where's the DA?

May as well enjoy those indictments of Dick Cheney and Alberto Gonzales while you can, because it sure looks like they won't last very long.

Lawyers for Vice President Dick Cheney and former U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales were bewildered Wednesday when the prosecutor in a slew of indictments against them failed to appear in court.

Willacy County prosecutor Juan Angel Guerra's no-show ruined hopes their motions would quickly quash cases against their clients and stumped the presiding judge as well.

"At the very least, I expected the district attorney to be here," Manuel Banales said, asking Guerra's office manager, "Do you know where he is?"

The manager, Hilda Ramirez, was subpoenaed by defense attorney J.A. "Tony" Canales after buzz in the courthouse that Guerra was nowhere to be found. She told the judge she had been trying to reach Guerra all day.


When Banales asked Ramirez if she were concerned for Guerra's safety, she said she didn't know how to answer the question. Guerra's cell phone message box was full much of the day, but an assistant who answered the line late Wednesday said he was not ill.

I'm trying to decide which crime-and-courtroom TV drama this saga most resembles. Maybe "Hill Street Blues", if you could credibly portray Guerra as some kind of tragic anti-hero, or "Boston Legal" if you think it's farce all the way. If you have any better suggestions - and by all means, include your casting if possible - leave them in the comments. In the meantime, if this indictment survives much past the scheduled Friday arraignment, I'll be shocked. Like I said, enjoy it while you can.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on November 20, 2008 to Crime and Punishment
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