City official pleads the 5th under oath - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

2/18/10

City official pleads the 5th under oath

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By James Clark | email

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) – A Lubbock city official pleads the 5th amendment in a sworn statement. The Fifth Amendment affords citizens the right against self incrimination. Councilman John Leonard was called as a witness for deposition in one of the lawsuits back and forth between the City of Lubbock and businessman Ted Parker.

Leonard copied documents to local insurance agent Jim White back in October of 2006 when Parker was bidding for the city's health insurance contract because Leonard wanted White's advice. White, not realizing the paperwork might be confidential, passed along the information to Parker's company.]

More than one lawyer has told KCBD NewsChannel 11 that in order to violate the Texas Government Code, Leonard and White would have to act knowingly and intentionally. It would not be a violation unless they knew it was a violation. 

It turns out Parker's company did not get the bid. Since then, Parker and the City have accused each other of various violations and the FBI raided Lubbock City Hall back in May of 2008. 

Leonard's attorney, Kevin Glasheen, says he wanted to wait for assurance from federal prosecutors before advising Leonard to answer any questions in the civil lawsuit. That assurance has not come yet.  Leonard is not charged with a crime.

Glasheen says, "John's position is that the information he gave Jim White was non-confidential material from the Council Agenda Book, which had already been made public by the City."

Meanwhile civil attorneys representing certain city officials are seeking an order to force Leonard to testify and pay expenses for the first deposition earlier this month when Leonard pleaded the 5th.

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