the court of criminal appeals.

The Court of Criminal Appeals (CCA) is the highest court for criminal cases in Texas. Clint is among the most experienced and knowledgeable lawyers in Texas when it comes to the CCA.

The Court of Criminal Appeals.

The Court of Criminal Appeals (CCA) is the highest court for criminal cases in Texas. Clint’s knowledge and experience with the workings of the CCA is unrivaled.

the highest court for criminal cases in texas.

Texas is blessed to have two high courts—one for civil cases (the Supreme Court) and one for criminal cases (the Court of Criminal Appeals). Having two courts allows each to have judges and staff who are experts in their fields, rather than having career civil lawyers handle criminal matters or vice versa.

Clint’s knowledge of the Court of Criminal Appeals is extraordinary. He worked there for two years, where he worked closely with Judge Paul Womack and saw firsthand how a great judge handles his business. Since becoming a prosecutor, Clint has appeared before the Court of Criminal Appeals more often than all but a small handful of lawyers, and he has done so successfully: He has won 10 out of 12 of his cases that court has decided.

Types of CCA CASES.

The Court of Criminal Appeals handles three major types of cases.

DIRECT APPEALS OF CAPITAL MURDER CASES

First, it handles the direct appeal of all capital cases where a death sentence is imposed. Clint has handled two appeals in death cases, both of which he won.

DISCRETIONARY REVIEW

Second, it handles cases on what is called “discretionary review.” These are cases where a lower appellate court has issued an opinion and the losing party would like the Court of Criminal Appeals to review the case. This is similar to the petition for certiorari process the federal Supreme Court uses. The Court of Criminal Appeals typically grants review only if the case poses an interesting legal question, or is a significant issue that needs to be settled by the state’s high court.

For instance, in one case a lower court held a search warrant was invalid because there was no probable cause to believe a business with tinted windows would have a security camera system. Clint petitioned for discretionary review and the Court of Criminal Appeals unanimously reversed the lower court and held the warrant was valid. The opinion—which has a fascinating background including a “black money” scam, a defendant telling his associates to take the tied-up victims to “the spot,” and the associates shooting the victims as they rolled out of the back of a moving van on a freeway on ramp—is here.

WRITS OF HABEAS CORPUS

Finally, the Court of Criminal Appeals handles writs of habeas corpus in cases where the defendant was sentenced to prison or death. In these cases the court works closely with trial courts to conduct hearings and address claims the defendant was unable to raise on direct appeal. Often these are actual innocence claims, or claims the defendant’s counsel was ineffective. 

Clint worked on a lot of writs when he was at the court and is very familiar with the process and law for these cases.

Pol. ad. paid for by the Clint Morgan for Judge campaign in compliance with the voluntary limits of the Judicial Campaign Fairness Act.