TX Supreme Ct. Justice's wife indicted

April 30, 2008 4:37:59 PM PDT
The wife of a Texas Supreme Court justice is charged with felonies. Ten months after a fire destroyed their Spring area home, and burned their neighbor's house, Francisca Medina, the wife of Justice David Medina was indicted Wednesday on charges that she started that fire.The indictment alleges that Francisca set fire last summer to the couple's home in Spring. The house was later found to be uninsured.

Francisca was indicted Wednesday on two first degree felonies ? arson and criminal mischief ? and on a state jail felony criminal mischief charge, stemming from damage to a pair of neighboring homes. The prosecutor says one of the state witnesses could be the defendant's husband.

"David Medina was obviously not indicted today," said prosecutor Vic Wisner. "I can't tell you who our witnesses will be at trial, but I can tell you that we have researched the law. We think that even if he should choose to invoke the marital privilege, it would not apply in this case. So, certainly, if we feel that he has relevant testimony to give, you can anticipate him being called as a witness."

Francisca's attorney Dick DeGuerin says she is innocent of the charges.

Back in January, a jury indicted Medina and his wife on charges of tampering and arson. Less than 24 hours later, Harris County District Attorney Chuck Rosenthal dropped the charges, saying there was a lack of evidence. In an unprecedented development, that grand jury spoke out to the media and the public, saying the process had failed them.

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