I wish to comment on the Wednesday headlines “Dumping case runs flat.” First, the article gave the impression that the case has been languishing in the district attorney’s office for some time, when the reality is that the tire dumping case was forwarded by letter from the county attorney to the district attorney’s office on Sept. 28, 2012. The case, as a misdemeanor, had three settings in county court – on Dec. 16, 2011, Jan. 19, 2012, and March 8, 2012. So the D.A.’s office did not get the file until more than six months after the last county court hearing.
What was forwarded to the D.A.’s office was not a criminal investigation but an investigation done by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality for its civil penalties and remedies. It is far from a complete felony criminal investigation.
Without my own investigator, the only way my office will be able to complete the investigation will be with the assistance of a law enforcement agency.
But let’s assume for argument’s sake that there is sufficient evidence to indict and convict the alleged tire dumper, a process which by the way can take several months; how does that solve the problem? The criminal justice system is about defendant punishment and rehabilitation and is not in any way going to be a solution for a local environmental problem.