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Third Court to Hear FLDS Mandamus April 29

It turns out that Tuesday’s post about FLDS appeals coming to Austin was timely.  According to this press release and what I can gather from the Third Court of Appeals’ web site, lawyers for Texas RioGrande Legal Aid filed a mandamus petition yesterday asking the court to order District Judge Barbara Walther to hold hearings at which each family would be able to respond to allegations of abuse before the children are placed in foster care in locations throughout the state.

A panel consisting of Chief Justice Law and Justices Pemberton and Waldrop will hear argument in In re Sara Steed, et al. (No. 03-08-00235-CV) on April 29 at 2:00 p.m.  The house should be packed.

Update:  The Supreme Court of Texas Blog and a commenter to this post point out that the order setting argument is addressed to the motion for temporary relief, rather than the mandamus petition itself.  It’s an unusual development for an extraordinary case.

4/25/08 Update.  The oral argument has been canceled.  The court has taken no action on the mandamus petition.

D. Todd Smith
About the Author

D. Todd Smith is an Austin-based civil appellate specialist who works with trial teams from the earliest stages of litigation. In trial courts, he takes the lead on strategic analysis and briefing, jury charges, and potentially dispositive motions, all with a focus on preserving error and positioning cases for appellate review.

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