Say What?! Classic Courtroom Humor from Judge Jerry Buchmeyer
In Memory of Judge Jerry Buchmeyer, 1933-2009
Real life Texas Courtroom Humor.
From 1980 to 2008, U.S. District Judge Jerry Buchmeyer entertained lawyers far and wide with his "et cetera" column in the Texas Bar Journal.
For this page, we've reached into the vault to bring you classic material spanning two decades of courtroom humor, most of which comes straight from actual depostions and trials.
From Robinson C. Ramsey
of Wharton, this excerpt from a deposition in a divorce case; Rob is
questioning the husband about a family estate trust that wenty awry."
Q. When did you find out it was not the right thing to do?
A. When I wound up in jail.
Q. When was that?
A. I don't really remember when that was, I don't remember.
Q. Do you remember approximately how long it was from the time you initially set up the trusts?
A. I don't know if that was a couple of years after that, or I really don't remember when that was.
Q. What were the circumstances that led to your winding up in jail?
A. It was - we were trying to, for lack of better words, hide income.
In other words - and in doing that, we got audited ... It started when
we got audited, and then the IRS agent that came to the house.
From W. Marc McDonald
of Fort Worth (Bourland, Smith, etc.), this "classically confused"
statement made by one of his partners, William R. Korlo, Jr. during a
Mr. Korlo: All right. Let me turn your
attention to Plaintiff's Exhibit No. 3. I'm sorry. For purposes of the
record, I've been messing up. I keep saying Plaintiff's Exhibits and I'm
So let the record reflect that I don't know who I represent.
(1) From M.C. (Rick) Walton of Houston (Union Pacific Railroad), this typo he found in a classified advertisement that appeared in the Texas Bar Journal just two pages before the "et cetera" column.
There are vacancies for patent attorneys with the Navel Research Laboratory (NRL) at its Washington, D.C., and Bay St. Louis, Miss. locations.
(2) From Randy Schaffer
of Houston, this typo from a petition for habeas corpus relief.
...Applicant was denied a fair and impartial judge and sentencing
hearing because the visiting judge, by deferring to jury verdicts in
other cases, abdicated his responsibility to assess punishment based on
applicant's individualized circumstances. Applicant is entitled to be resented by a different judge.
(3) From Clifford F. McMaster of Fort Worth, this typo made by a pro se plaintiff in an answer filed in a federal civil case in an "Answer to Order (sic) to Show Cause": To the horrible Judge Terry R. Means ....
(4) From District Court Judge Teresa K. Luther
of Grand Island, Neb., this typo from a Petition to Modify child
support that is currently pending in her court: The Petitioner has a new
position whereby his wages have deceased.
(5) From District Judge Joe M. Leonard
of Greenville (169th Judicial District), this typo from a brief in a
consumer case. The Ard court further went on to disavow the Lee decision
and accept instead the descent from the Lee decision.