The wealth Tony Buzbee has amassed during the course of becoming one of Houston’s most successful plaintiffs attorneys has allowed him to indulge by purchasing expensive and unusual items—everything from a WWII Sherman tank to rare works of art.
And now a Dallas woman faces a felony criminal charge for wrecking $300,000 worth of paintings and sculptures in his River Oaks home last weekend.
Lindy Lou Layman, a 29-year-old Dallas woman who lists her occupation as a “freelance court reporter” on her LinkedIn profile, was arrested and charged with criminal mischief for destroying three original paintings and two abstract sculptures at the attorney’s house.
According to the criminal complaint filed against Layman on Dec. 23, Layman allegedly “tore paintings off the wall with her hands” and threw the sculptures across the room. She also allegedly poured an unspecified liquid on top of the paintings.
Layman was arrested and released from jail after posting a $30,000 bond on Dec. 24 and is set to face her first court appearance on Thursday.
Buzbee said that Layman came to his home with others and that he had not met her prior to that evening.
“She at some point appeared too intoxicated and she was asked to leave. She wouldn’t and got angry because she didn’t want to leave. The police dealt with it,” Buzbee said. “It’s not the first time I’ve had guests at a party of mine over imbibe. Most leave when you ask them. She didn’t.”
Buzbee said the incident could have been worse.
“I collect art. I don’t want it damaged,” Buzbee said. “She also pulled a Renoir and a Monet off the wall. Luckily those weren’t damaged.”
Natalie Ware, a Harris County assistant public defender who is representing Layman, did not immediately return a call for comment. Layman could not be located for comment.
A former U.S. Marine who served in the Persian Gulf War, Buzbee made news this year when he bought an M4 Sherman tank that landed on the beach in Normandy with the U.S. Armed Forces during WWII.
In 2010, Buzbee also got attention when he got rid of some of his wealth by donating 13 exotic cars worth an estimated $3.5 million to the Jesse Tree, a Galveston nonprofit that assists underprivileged people with health care and social services.
“I turned 42. And I obviously can buy whatever I want. And I decided, how long am I really going to ride around in a Lamborghini?” Buzbee said at the time. “You can only own so many cars, and you can only drive one at a time, unless you’re really talented. And I’m not that talented.”