Conroe, March 23 – Visiting District Judge Randy Clapp of the 269th District Court of Wharton County ruled this morning during a telephonic hearing with the attorneys involved in the Texas Open Meetings Act (“TOMA”) criminal case of Montgomery County Judge Craig Doyal, Precinct 2 Commissioner Charlie Riley, and political consultant Marc Davenport that instead of proceeding with a jury trial next week, the Court, counsel, and parties will conduct a full-week hearing on the constitutionality of TOMA.
Since Defendant Craig Doyal was the first named in an indictment his constitutional challenge to TOMA – on grounds of alleged “vagueness” and alleged violation of his rights of free speech – will proceed first. Houston attorney Rusty Hardin will present Doyal’s case. The other defense lawyers, including renowned Conroe attorney Steve Jackson, who represents Davenport, will put their cases on next, with the State going last.
The attorneys anticipate the hearing will last a full week.
No new date has yet been set for the jury trial of the criminal case against Doyal, Riley, and Davenport on the factual merits, so it is now subject to an indefinite delay.
Davenport has withdrawn his request to the Beaumont Court of Appeals to stay the case against him, so that he may participate in the hearing challenging the constitutionality of TOMA.
The Golden Hammer will provide more in-depth and full coverage soon.