Judge's Opinion in HPD Shooting Death Isn't Tethered to the Facts

A Houston federal court judge based his recent dismissal of a wrongful death case on a misreading of toxicology results, relying on HPD's Internal Affairs officers' use of Wikipedia to determine drug levels, and chiding the plaintiffs for questioning the judgment of the officer at the center of the case, a man who once assaulted a woman -- a fellow officer -- to such an extent that she had to bite his penis in order to escape his home and call 911.

According to the Houston Press' reading of documents filed by Patsy Pate, whose son Blake Pate was shot to death by an HPD sergeant on Christmas Day in 2011, some HPD authorities coddled a man with a history of sexual violence toward his fellow officers. After Patsy Pate raised the issue of how those officers said Hampton made them fear for their lives, the judge admonished her by writing off Hampton's predatory behavior as "character assault." Yet Hampton's record speaks for itself -- not character assault, but character description. The officer's lack of judgment in those incidents dovetail with a judge's bizarrely written opinion dismissing Pate's wrongful death case and call into question just what happened the night Sgt. Curtis Hampton shot Blake Pate to death.

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Contributor Craig Malisow covers crooks, quacks, animal abusers, elected officials, and other assorted people for the Houston Press.
Contact: Craig Malisow