Federal Prosecutor Reportedly Withdraws From Major Gang Case Out Of Fear For Safety

DeptofJusticeThe murders of two prosecutors in Kaufman County, Texas has caused heightened security measures to protect court staff and prosecutors. However, few expected those concerns to lead to the withdrawal of a federal prosecutor in Houston. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jay Hileman has reportedly announced that he will withdraw from a case out of personal safety concerns. If true, it is a rare case for a federal prosecutor to refuse to litigate a case out of fear.


Defense attorney Richard Ely expressed understanding for Hileman’s unwillingness to put himself at risk in the case against the Aryan Brotherhood. There have been warnings that the white supremacist group might try to retaliate for the prosecution. However, no one has been able to pinpoint the source of these rumors.

Last Saturday, District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife, Cynthia, were found shot to death in their home and two months earlier, felony prosecutor Mark Hasse was gunned down in a parking lot near the county courthouse.

About the time of Hasse’s killing, Hileman received protection from the U.S. Marshal service. Many prosecutors are likely to view Hileman’s decision harshly since threats are unfortunately common for prosecutors. Scott Burns, executive director for the National District Attorneys Association, told reporters that “there are 40,000 prosecutors in the country, and anyone who has spent some time trying a case will probably tell you that they receive threats all the time . . . This is unfortunately something we deal with all the time. The only good news is that to be murdered because of your position as a prosecutor is still very (unlikely).”

By withdrawing, Hileman will require another prosecutor to step forward to carry out these duties. It also suggests that the Justice Department cannot protect its staff, which leaves the agency looking like its counterparts in drug cartel countries. The Justice Department has not given any information on the connection to these other cases of state prosecutors or how the department will proceed if a prosecutor was refusing to serve out of concern for his personal safety.

Source: Dallas Morning News

60 thoughts on “Federal Prosecutor Reportedly Withdraws From Major Gang Case Out Of Fear For Safety”

  1. Bron,

    I agree…. And to make matters worse some are being targeted just because of association….
    ========================================
    Good point.

    The prosecutors have been shot-gunning it with conspiracy theories.

    That was pointed out in my link to the Daily Beast article.

  2. Gene H. 1, April 4, 2013 at 10:01 am

    “Where this winds up I don’t know, but there is a feeling of dread in the pit of my stomach as I write this.”

    As long as it’s not a “feeling of Dredd in the pit of [your] stomach”, there is some hope. Cannibalism is pretty much the ground floor for social collapse with it being a Zombie Apocalypse and all. 😀
    =======================================
    Reminds me of what Tweetie (a.k.a. Chris Matthews) said to David Stockman on Hardball yesterday … I think it was.

    He said, don’t tell me about the apocalypse, I am only interested in the next two weeks.

    He has certain genes in the pit of his stomach too, weak ones, and “can’t handle the truth.

    His sleepy belief that he is the big dog in the fight may suffer the fate of those who disappeared from MSNBC before him (Olberman, Cenk, etc), because software is beginning to writing the news now (MOMCOM 2.0).

  3. “Know your ‘Aryans’: the real white nationalist threat in America”

    by Leonard Zeskind

    April 4, 2013

    The Aryan Brotherhood linked to murders of Texas DAs is chiefly a prison gang. But far-right extremism does menace the US

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/apr/04/know-aryans-white-nationalist-threat

    (Leonard Zeskind, author of Blood and Politics
    The History of the White Nationalist Movement from the Margins to the Mainstream)

  4. Bron,

    I agree…. And to make matters worse some are being targeted just because of association….

  5. nick:

    why do you think that? Isnt this a good deal of attention they dont want? I imagine a good many Texas Rangers are looking at them pretty hard about now.

  6. Lots of croc tears from people who often spew venom toward prosecutors otherwise. This is almost certainly the Aryan Brotherhood.

  7. If the message ever becomes we prosecute those who do not threaten us harm but leave alone those who do threaten and harm prosecutors, then those in latter will become the former.

  8. What Darren said. If a prosecutor cannot take the heat that comes with the job, then he needs to resign.

  9. “Where this winds up I don’t know, but there is a feeling of dread in the pit of my stomach as I write this.”

    As long as it’s not a “feeling of Dredd in the pit of [your] stomach”, there is some hope. Cannibalism is pretty much the ground floor for social collapse with it being a Zombie Apocalypse and all. 😀

    I’m sorry. I could not resist the easy zombie joke. Too much “The Walking Dead” perhaps. Although if you discount the zombies, TWD is a pretty good picture of what life totally without law and government looks like. Somalia without the eating of brains. To those who say “Anarchy now!” or “It can’t happen here!”, I say “Have you seen the pictures?”

    But seriously, Mike, it is something that should make people uncomfortable. The canary in the coal mine gone silent. I also agree with your assessment that although the systems have suffered failings in various ways and to varying degrees over time that the disenchantment we are seeing ever growing in our populace now is rooted in seeing “the man” behind the curtain. An inevitable consequence of the information age. You can’t run for office promising to prosecute war criminals and then give them a pass without arousing public anger. You can’t run on a platform of equality and then prosecute legitimate businesses growing marijuana under state law for medical purposes and let the investment banking scumbags who ruined the economy by their crimes and malfeasance not only go free, but reward them for their behavior. That discord is the price that always comes with a bifurcated two-tier legal system that caters to oligarchs and pisses on everyone else.

    The fabric of civilization is much thinner than most people think.

    Pols and fatcats have disregarded the very real lesson of “you reap what you sow”. Their sense of entitlement will not protect them when the Fall happens. It will be their own guards eating them when the zombies come home to roost.

    Thus the pendulum swings.

    And so it goes.

  10. “It’s about a steady fraying of the social fabric as dissatisfaction with our governmental systems grows and a growing lack of inhibition about taking matters into “your own hands”.”

    Gene,

    I totally agree that this represents a “fraying of the social fabric”. Despite the beliefs of the “privileged classes” the majority of the people aren’t stupid. We get low voter turnout in this country because many have stopped believing the empty rhetoric of “American Democracy (Exceptionalism)” spoon fed to us as mythology and propaganda. Those that try to hold onto to their beliefs are made cynical by the actions of those “heroes” they elect who ignore the platforms they were elected upon. The curtain has been blown away and the
    backstage scenes are exposed with a sickening reality.

    In reality the “system” has always been this way. The difference today that is the key to the unraveling of the social fabric, is that we’ve stopped being fooled by the smoke and mirrors. Where this winds up I don’t know, but there is a feeling of dread in the pit of my stomach as I write this.

  11. Swarthmore mom 1, April 4, 2013 at 9:06 am

    Dredd, I don’t think the Aryan Brotherhood is going to use Jewish Bob Dylan”s song as their theme song. They follow a strict anti semitic and racist message
    ========================================
    They can be more diplomatic than that:

    I got up close and personal with members of the Brotherhood more than 20 years ago in Nevada.

    the leader of the group, a huge guy with reddish hair and beard appropriately named “Big Red,” had a legal problem I helped him to solve.

    Big Red had served in the military. He wanted some documents from the military to present at his upcoming murder trial. I guess he wanted to prove how patriotic he had been while serving his country. But none of them could fill out the stack of forms, so I volunteered to help. When the documents I requested came back about a month later, I was considered a legal whiz on the order of F. Lee Bailey.

    I was, to a degree, “in.” They considered me a harmless black mascot

    (Daily Beast). Even though they are criminally insane in a sense, their highest leadership takes out members (kills them) if they go rogue and do things like this which bring heat on the overall gang.

    Which led some detectives to indicate these three murders are not like official gang acts.

    The California version and the Texas version have contrasts between them, due to the different cultures in the two states.

    My skepticism also tells me that this is one way for LEO land to increase budgets and the private prison system would go for that too.

    Nevertheless, as you indicated about racism and as Gene H said about cultural collapse, the mass prosecutions going on against them could push them over the edge.

  12. “It also suggests that the Justice Department cannot protect its staff, which leaves the agency looking like its counterparts in drug cartel countries.”
    And here I thought Mr. Holder was just afraid of bankers. What a sad state of affairs we have in our vaunted DOJ.

  13. Raff,

    What did the folks at OWS do to get shit at, tazed or maced?

  14. Gene, Shooting at prosecutors in Texas is nothing new. The state has a long history of it but this is the first time that the wife was shot, too.

  15. Smom,

    I think you missed the point of what I said. It’s not about public support for the Brotherhood. Note in that statement the recognition that there have been what seems to be a lot more deaths over civil suits as well. It’s about a steady fraying of the social fabric as dissatisfaction with our governmental systems grows and a growing lack of inhibition about taking matters into “your own hands”. It’s a symptom of social collapse. Is it a valid statistical trend? Or isolated incidents? Time will tell.

  16. Dredd, I don’t think the Aryan Brotherhood is going to use Jewish Bob Dylan”s song as their theme song. They follow a strict anti semitic and racist message

  17. Raff,

    The point is what were you doing wrong to get shot at….

  18. People near the epicenter do not think this was an ordered, official ABT hit. It is not their style to invite mass retaliation unless it has to happen.

    This is more like a rogue gang member or members doing their own revenge.

    Mexican gangs would do this type thing.

    But this could be the new theme song of the ABT:

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