Prine v. Texas (original by judge keel)Annotate this Case
A jury found Appellant Alvin Prine, Jr. guilty of sexual assault and sentenced him to 20 years’ confinement and a fine of $8,000. He claimed on appeal that his attorney was ineffective during the punishment phase of trial for calling three witnesses who gave damaging testimony on cross-examination. The Court of Appeals agreed and remanded the case for a new punishment hearing. The Court of Criminal Appeals reversed, finding the defense attorney faced a dilemma in the punishment phase of this case. "The facets of that dilemma are not fully revealed by the record before us. Thus it is impossible to say that his decision to call these witnesses and suffer their cross-examination was so unreasonable that no other attorney would have made the same decision." Without a more fully developed record, the court of appeals erred to hold that the trial attorney was ineffective as a matter of law.