By Justin Kendall
Johnson County District Attorney Phill Kline sent an e-mail to his employees this morning explaining that he's trying to arrange meetings with Steve Howe and Rick Guinn -- candidates running for the office.
The Pitch obtained a copy of the e-mail, which follows.
I know that this period of time can be unsettling for many of you. As I have previously mentioned I will invite both Mr. Guinn and Mr. Howe to address all of you at separate times. On that occasion you can ask and hopefully obtain answers to your many questions.
Many of made attempts to try to interpret comments made by the candidates at the Bar luncheon and as often occurs, some of these interpretations are based on others efforts to interpret. In other words, such talk is often misleading and counter productive. It is my hope that both gentlemen will agree to speak with all of you directly.
Also, I read in Mr. Rose’s gossip column today that the office jury trial conviction rate is under 50% - this, as many of Mr. Rose’s columns, is patently false. The jury trial conviction rate is now at 72%, higher than in recent years under my predecessor.
I will let you know about Mr. Guinn and Mr. Howe.
The irony here is that Kline himself fired seven prosecutors and an investigator after being sworn into office in January 2007. (Howe was one of the fired prosecutors.) Many of Kline's new hires were inexperienced and shared his conservative values. So now, as Howe and Guinn face off to replace Kline in the general election, it's likely that many of Kline's employees are worried about facing the same fate as their predecessors.