Friday, May 02, 2008

Officials tussle on grand jury dealings

Web Posted: 05/01/2008 10:59 PM CDT


BOERNE — District Attorney Bruce Curry has balked at revealing Kendall County grand jury deliberations on the April 16, 2003, death of Air Force Col. Philip Shue — in which the panel found no evidence of a criminal act — for use in an upcoming lawsuit trial.

Shue's widow, Tracy Shue, is suing USAA Life Insurance Co. for alleged negligence in its handling of a life insurance policy on her husband, whose death in a car wreck in Kendall County was ruled suicide.

An order backed by the lawsuit parties was issued April 21 by Kendall County Court at Law Judge Bill Palmer directing Curry to supply them with the secret testimony and evidence within 10 days.

An objection filed on Curry's behalf Wednesday argues that revealing grand jury proceedings for use in a lawsuit could expose Curry to fines and possible removal from office.

It said that ‘to expose the sanctity' of the grand jury proceedings, and raising the specter that jurors may be called as witnesses in the civil case, ‘could have a chilling effect on a grand jury's exploration of the truth.'

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