LAWFUEL – Press Release Service for Law News – In the June 12, 2006 issue of the Dallas Business Journal, writer Dave Moore provides a look at Baker Botts litigation lawyer Rod Phelan. To open his article, Moore relates how Phelan launched his career with a law suit against the city of Dallas. Moore writes:
“By all appearances, Rod Phelan’s first go as a trial lawyer was a failure.
Police shot his client when he held a grocery store cashier at gunpoint. It was Phelan’s job to sue the city of Dallas on the grounds that it violated the man’s civil rights when it failed to provide him any painkillers — not even an aspirin — to ease his agony from his gunshot wounds.
Phelan faced off against George Bramblett, who by then was an experienced trial lawyer.
‘The fear was paralyzing,’ Phelan said.
He took the case anyway. When he visited the convict in his cell to interview him, he feared for his life. The man, Phelan said, was tremendously mean and strong. In the end, the man’s case rested on the testimony of his wife, a convicted drunken driver and a convicted rapist. The plaintiff had complained to all three that he hadn’t been given any pain killers.
‘(Phelan) did it to gain trial experience — all at my expense,’ Bramblett wrote the Dallas Business Journal recently, recounting the event. ‘He was well-prepared and put on a big show. I knew then he would be a great trial lawyer — and I was right. He is fearless as a trial lawyer.’ ”