HOUSTON - Houston’s most notorious ex-cop was forced out of home convalescence after surgery and into a Harris County Courtroom. Goines, the central figure in the fatal Harding Street drug raid, rapidly pleaded the 5th and left the building.
Goines is the former Houston police officer who is charged with felony murder in another case in which a couple was killed during a deadly no-knock drug raid at their home on Harding Street.
"We will not have him testifying in any matter while there is an investigation pending by the Harris County District Attorney's Office,” said Nicole DeBorde, Goines’ attorney.
There was a good reason for his silence.
Goines now stands accused of framing Otis Mallet on a cocaine trafficking charge back in 2008. Mallet was convicted and sentenced to 8 years in prison solely on Goines’ testimony – an account both Mallet’s lawyers and prosecutors now contend was completely false. In other words, a drug deal that never happened.
“What we are really concerned about is that an innocent person was framed and convicted and spent time behind bars and has been on parole ever since. Our job as prosecutors here is guardians of justice. It is our job to get the right guy,” said Kim Ogg, Harris County District Attorney.
It’s an apparent miscarriage of Justice Judge Ramona Franklin is poised to reverse. It was Franklin who ordered Goines out of his home and into her courtroom to answer a subpoena, despite his medical condition.
Franklin said Otis Mallet has waited long enough for a reckoning.
For his part, the man prosecutors believe was cruelly persecuted by a renegade cop, left the courtroom without saying a word.
"Otis has been fighting this case since 2008. It’s fair to say he’s pretty tired of being put through all this stuff, but hopefully, he will be through with it soon enough,” said Jonathan Landers, Mallet’s attorney.
“Soon enough” will be two weeks when all parties will reconvene.
In all likelihood, Judge Franklin will ask an appeals court to overturn Mallet’s conviction.
In the meantime, the DA’s office is considering a range of possible new criminal charges against Gerald Goines.
Following the deadly raid last January, the district attorney's office said they would launch a review of hundreds of cases spanning the officer's career.