Monday, June 16, 2008


Last Tuesday I had the opportunity to sit in on the proceedings of a county court at law. A county court at law in Texas is a state trial court. One of our attorneys would be representing an individual in a criminal case.

The office’s second attorney, myself and the other two interns attended the hearing. The four of us sat in the rear of the courtroom watching all of the activity. At one point the trial judge asked who we were. Our supervising attorney stood up and explained we were law students and we were here to observe. The judge simply nodded and carried on with his business. There was much discussion in Spanish, but no praying as far as I could tell. Of course we might have just missed it since we arrived a few minutes late. It was interesting to note that side conversations were mainly in Spanish and anything that needed to be “on the record” was in English.

After a while the Judge returned his attention to us. He asked me where I went to school and I answered while seated “The University of Texas.” My supervising attorney hissed “Stand up!” I popped out of my seat, feeling quite chastised, and said “Sorry, your honor.” He then asked what year in law school I was and after I answered asked how I had felt about my first year. I told him that it had been scary. He grinned at me and moved on to questioning the next intern.

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