As Texas Right to Life reported Tuesday, a bogus misdemeanor indictment against Center for Medical Progress founder David Daleiden has been dismissed by Harris County Judge Diane Bull. Judge Bull cited a lack of court jurisdiction to proceed with Daleiden’s case. In Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson’s indictment of Daleiden, a technical omission rendered the indictment void. The indictment failed to address an exception in the law Daleiden was charged with breaking, which is a requirement for a valid indictment.
The indictment, issued in January, purports to charge Daleiden with the Class A misdemeanor of intending to buy human organs. The order dismissing the case reads, in part: “An indictment’s failure to negate an exception is the same as its failure to allege an essential element of the offense; it renders the indictment void.” In a statement, the Center for Medical Progress said that the dismissal of the misdemeanor indictments “sends a strong message to Planned Parenthood and their political cronies that colluding to suppress the First Amendment rights of citizen journalists will never work.”
Because the indictment was rendered void on a technicality, Devon Anderson’s office could easily refile the charge and continue to pursue misdemeanor charges against Daleiden. U.S. News & World Report explains:
Grant Scheiner, a Houston criminal defense attorney not connected to the case, said the misdemeanor count was dismissed on a technicality and prosecutors could easily refile the charge under a different cause number.
He called the decision to not refile the charge “very odd.”
“Unless the prosecutor felt there was something wrong with the case, for example if one of the statutory exceptions did apply, then it would be very peculiar for the prosecutor not to refile,” Scheiner said.
But, tellingly, Anderson told the Texas Observer that her office will not appeal the judge’s decision. Instead, Anderson shifted attention to the felony charges related to the IDs used by Daleiden and his cohort Sandra Merritt when they went undercover at Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast. “Our office remains focused on the felony charge pending in the 338th District Court,” Anderson said.
While the misdemeanor indictment was dismissed on an easily-reparable technicality, Anderson’s intention to not revisit the charge points to the bogus nature of the indictment. As Daleiden noted in the immediate aftermath of the indictment in January, “Buying fetal tissue requires a seller as well.” In other words, if Daleiden could be validly charged with the intent to buy human organs, Planned Parenthood by logical extension must likewise be charged with the intent to sell human organs. Yet, we are all aware of the D.A.’s failure to address the collusion of Planned Parenthood – the only party that actually did have intent to break the law – in the plot. Live Action News’ Calvin Freiburger notes the absurdity, saying:
…Daleiden’s clear lack of intent to go through with any transaction gets directly at the heart of why the charge was bogus, because the law he was accused of breaking expressly requires intent for there to be a real violation—an intent, by the way, that couldn’t even have existed if, as Planned Parenthood apologists claim, PP officials never expressed a desire for illegal profits. This isn’t a technicality; it’s the essence of the charge.
Meanwhile, Daleiden’s legal team is preparing for a hearing in the motion to quash the felony indictments, which will take place July 26. Daleiden’s Houston attorney plans to spotlight Planned Parenthood’s audaciously publicized relationship with the D.A.’s office during the D.A.’s sham investigation. Breitbart Texas reports:
Houston attorney Jared Woodfill, one of Daleiden’s lawyers told Breitbart Texas, “The collusion between the DA and Planned Parenthood lawyers will be flushed out during this hearing. We will put Planned Parenthood’s lawyer on the stand and will expose the witch hunt that ended up with the indictment of my client but let baby part selling Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast get off scot-free.”
Continue to follow Texas Right to Life for updates on this important story.