The Jean Ponzanelli Case–Another Williamson County “Victim”

An article about Jean Ponzanelli, one of Keith Lauerman’s clients is very well written by KXAN and lays out the facts of a case that occurred in Williamson County in the past couple of months.  I hope that you all will go and read that story, it really offends me to see what has happened in the "justice" system and further it causes me pain to see how so many of the elected officials think and respond to cases in Wilco.  Very little of these comments surprise me as I have worked in Williamson County, not only as an attorney but also as a deputy at the Sheriff’s Department (No, I never directly observed corruption but I definitely sensed a depraved sense of justice before I left).

While I was reading through the comments to the KXAN article, I came across this one posted by Shocked in Wilco:

I think it is very important for people to know the girl was 2 weeks from turning 14 and she lied about her age! Jean was 17 years old! Their was no assault! The sex was consensual. Jean is not a man he is a kid! He will go into prison a kid and come out a criminal! Where is the justice in this? All district judges in Williamson county have been appointed! NEVER elected by the people. No one will run against these people. People in Williamson County should be afraid. Maybe next time it will be your child that is sent to prison for just a foolish judgement call. Teenagers have sex and many of these young girls are advertising for sex on their My Space accounts. Why isn’t the girl going to prison? What a sad day for Williamson County!

I agree with the point that Shocked is trying to make but I wanted to take a moment to clarify some things…

  • The elected officials prosecutors / judges, both County and District, have been elected — but most have run un-opposed, meaning without an opponent, because…
  • Williamson County, over that past 10-25 years, has elected Republican candidates and thus Democrats have not seen fit to run against them–spending the thousands of dollars necessary to run an effective campaign…so,
  • If people are aware of what is going on and that miscarriages of justice like this one occur on a fairly regular and in a frighteningly routine manner, get out a VOTE!
  • When Democrats begin to win or at least show that they can be competitive and come "close" to winning… things may begin to change.
  • Even if a new candidate does not win, a close race for an incumbent is likely to make him or her a bit more moderate… because it would be clear that the people will not tolerate the "old ways" of Williamson County.

So, voters in Williamson County — pay attention.  It may only be a matter of time until an allegation is made that affects you or someone you care about and you find yourself in the harsh clutches of the criminal justice system there….