U.S.A. – -(Ammoland.com)-
“A Travis County grand jury … indicted Army Sgt. Daniel Perry on charges of murder, aggravated assault and deadly conduct after he shot and killed Garrett Foster, an armed protester in downtown Austin last year,” The Texas Tribune reports. “…Perry stopped his car and honked at people protesting police brutality while they walked through the street, blocks from the state Capitol. Seconds later, he drove his car into the crowd, police said.”
And then he killed one of them? That doesn’t sound good.
But there’s more to the story than is being reported here, although the beginning of how it is unraveling is touched on:
“[Perry’s attorney Clinton] Broden said the prosecutors in the Travis County District Attorney’s office refused to allow Perry’s attorney to present written evidence to the jury. This refusal is unusual in Texas and begs the question of why the District Attorney’s Office would not allow this,’ Broden said. ‘We understand the political motivations of the District Attorney, however, when this case is presented to a jury at trial and the jury gets to hear all the evidence instead of a one-sided presentation, we have every confidence that Sgt. Perry will be acquitted.’”
So what’s going on with the prosecutor? And why shouldn’t our default be to side with “two witnesses of the shooting [who] told the Texas Tribune they believed Perry’s behavior was threatening and intentional?” For that matter, aren’t his tweets about “protesters, anarchists, agitators, looters, or lowlifes” damning and indicative of a predisposition to wanting to do them harm?
In answer to that last one, most of the comment posters here, myself included, had better never find ourselves in a defensive gun use situation against anyone who is a member of a group we oppose because the Internet is forever (unless you’re David Chipman), and any sentiments expressed could come back to haunt us.
As for the other questions, first, let’s hear Perry’s side of the story, and to do that. Some friends of his have set up a gofundme page to help with his legal defense.
The reason he was in the area is he was also an Uber driver “to make ends meet.”
“Sgt. Perry had dropped his client on or close to West 6th Street at approximately 9:15 p.m. Sgt. Perry made a right onto Congress Avenue from Fourth Street, and it was there that he first encountered a throng of people in the street. It was not immediately apparent to Sgt. Perry what group was demonstrating and, prior to turning onto Congress Avenue, Sgt. Perry had been unaware that a demonstration was taking place. After Sgt. Perry turned onto Congress Avenue, several people started beating on his vehicle. Pictures showing the damage to Sgt. Perry’s car are in the possession of the police. The pictures included pictures of damage done by protestors hitting the car with brick, trying to pull the door of the frame and from bullets.”
He shot Foster, who was masked, in self-defense, Perry says, “after the man raised an AK-47 toward him.”
OK, so what’s the beef with the prosecution?
The gofundme page links to a Dropbox file, a “Request for Evidentiary Hearing in Support of a Motion to Dismiss Indictment Based Upon Prosecutorial Misconduct.” Part of what is alleged there includes:
“[T]he lead detective in this case, David Fugitt, was specifically instructed not to tell grand jurors that the State was in possession of evidence that would indicate that witnesses who claimed that the deceased, Garrett Foster, did not begin to raise his AK-47 assault rifle toward Sgt. Perry were not in a position to see Foster at the time of the incident and that any testimony they might provide would be false and perjurious. The detective was likewise instructed to amend demonstrative evidence that was to be presented to the grand jury (cutting the presentation by more than sixty percent) to remove exculpatory evidence after the demonstrative aid was presented to prosecutors for review.”
A prosecutor with all those resources at his disposal playing that way against a lone defendant who has to rely on crowdsourcing to raise money for his legal bills? Does it sound like mere citizens have a chance in such a system that demands crucial evidence to be withheld?
Manipulating the legal system so blatantly and arrogantly is reminiscent of a chilling sentiment from Joseph Stalin’s secret police go-to guy, Lavrentiy Beria, who boasted “Show me the man and I’ll show you the crime.”
And there’s more.
“The Austin Police Association was made aware of possible allegations of misconduct by Travis County District Attorney Jose Garza and members of his office,” a July 8 press release by the association and posted as an update on Sgt. Perry’s fundraising page announces. “The conduct and allegations included in both cases are extremely concerning and should be properly investigated immediately.
“The alleged conduct is beyond disturbing and further complicates two very serious cases; one involving a child victim of an aggravated sexual assault and the other a homicide,” the update continues. “Unfortunately, the Austin Police Association anticipates there are more cases or instances of inappropriate conduct by members of the Travis County District Attorney’s Office since Jose Garza took office in January 2021.”
Is it starting to sound like the wrong person is on trial here?
Not knowing anything about Garza, I figured I’d check him out and see what makes him tick, and it didn’t take long. We’re basically talking about a soft-on-criminals/open borders leftist, which explains why George Soros backed him.
And naturally, Garza’s a gun-grabber, implementing a policy of forcing accused citizens who have not been convicted of any crime to surrender their firearms for a variety of “reasons,” including the most telling one from the end of his long list:
“Any case, even if not within the above scenarios, where an ADA believes that a firearm surrender is necessary for public safety.”
Just because he says so? It’s not hard to picture him in a gold hat saying:
“Scenarios? We ain’t got no scenarios. We don’t need no scenarios. I don’t have to show you any stinking scenarios!”
“I entered office with a clear mandate from the community: to transform Travis County’s criminal justice system so it keeps everyone safe,” Garza told Austin Monthly. “We’ve made real progress since then, and we have a long path ahead.”
Does anybody who believes in the right of self-defense, or in anything traditionally American, for that matter, feel safer under the heel of such “progress”?
About David Codrea:
David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating/defending the RKBA and a long-time gun owner rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament. He blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” is a regularly featured contributor to Firearms News, and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.