On April 25, 172 lawyers, including five former State Bar of Texas presidents, joined in an amicus brief to show support for Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg, who is serving a 45-day jail sentence after pleading guilty to driving while intoxicated.
"Rosemary Lehmberg has unequalled experience, expertise, and ability to run the District Attorney’s office. She is a great prosecutor, lawyer, and public servant. She should remain in office and continue to serve the citizens of Travis County," says the April 25 Memorandum of Amici Curiae in The State of Texas Ex Rel. Kerry V. O’Brien v. Rosemary Lehmberg.
The amicus brief responds to a suit by Austin employment law solo Kerry O’Brien, who asked a Travis County District Court to suspend Lehmberg, appoint a temporary DA and to remove Lehmberg from office after a trial. O’Brien alleges that Lehmberg’s arrest and subsequent behavior in the Travis County Jail warrants her removal. [See " DA DWI: Rosemary Lehmberg Removal Suit Can Proceed, Texas Lawyer, April 29, 2013.]
According to the State Bar membership directory, the list does not include any prosecutors, and only 49 of the 172 lawyers list "criminal" as a practice area. One other lawyer works for the Travis County Office of Child Representation, representing children in Child Protective Services cases, which the DA’s office prosecutes.
The attorney who signed the brief, Spivey & Grigg partner Broadus Spivey, didn’t return a telephone call seeking comment. Austin criminal-law solo Betty Blackwell, who signed the brief’s Certificate of Service, didn’t return two telephone calls or one email seeking comment.