Potential attorney shortage due to amount of suspects in Twin Peaks shooting

Posted at 11:04 PM, May 22, 2015
and last updated 2015-05-23 16:50:00-04

Some of the families of 168 bikers behind bars after the Twin Peaks shooting on Sunday are hiring attorneys to represent them. At least three of them have already arranged legal representation.

There is a concern there might not be enough lawyers in the Waco area to represent those arrested, therefore some might to have be brought in from elsewhere.

Some attorneys told News Channel 25 they recognize the number of suspects may be more than local attorneys can handle, especially because most of the law firms are only representing one client.

Seth Sutton, from the Sutton Milam & Fanning Law Firm, will only represent Jeff Battey, who is from the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Will Hutson, from the Hutson and Harris Law Firm, will only be representing Boyce Ray Rockett from Robinson, unless something changes.

“Most of these defendants were grossly overcharged. Waco will very soon run out of attorneys since most will not be able to take more than one defendant. That is the decision our firm has made,” said Hutson and Harris Law Firm in a written statement.

Hutson filed a writ of habeas corpus in order to get Rockett's bond reduced.

The Swanton and Frederick criminal defense firm will represent only one of those arrested due to a possible conflict of interest. The law firm did not release the name of its client to News Channel 25.

Other law firms, such as Hunt and Tuegel, have received calls but have not picked a client yet.

Michelle Simpson Tuegel said her firm needs to have a better idea which individual they can help with their skill set. She said they need more facts before they can determine that.

Simpson Tuegel said they will likely only represent one person because of a possible conflict of interest.

“One of the concerns in any case there are co-defendants who are charged in the same case together. If you represented more than one, that the other may be in the position where they can provide information or testify against the other one and possibly receive a benefit for doing that,” said Simpson Tuegel.

Simpson Tuegel and her partner said they are only some attorneys in our area qualified to cover capital murders. 

“If that comes up in this case, we want to make sure we are available to handle one of those [capital murder] cases and that we have not already conflicted ourselves out on one of the other cases,” said Simpson Tuegel.

According to Simpson Tuegel, if there are several individuals charged with capital murder, that could make the case more complicated. Attorneys who handle capital murder cases need to meet certain qualifications and be approved by a committee in the 3rd administrative judicial region. She said there are only some qualified attorneys who handle capital murder cases in this region.