Longtime Texas jurist known for handling difficult, important legal matters
FORT WORTH, Texas – A judge known for his ability to impartially handle difficult and important cases has been assigned to hear the next portion of the sexual assault case involving former American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL) flight attendant Kimberly Goesling.
Senior Judge David Peeples of the 224th District Court in Bexar County will hear the motion to remove Judge Kimberly Fitzpatrick of 342nd District Court in Tarrant County from the case.
Ms. Goesling’s lawyers moved to recuse Judge Fitzpatrick last week after a new and unexplained jury verdict form appeared in the case file, one full week after the jury reached its verdict. The jury found a celebrity chef had in fact sexually assaulted Ms. Goesling but declined to hold American responsible.
The new verdict form contains a number of irregularities including juror signatures that do not appear to match those in the original.
Judge Peeples most recently ruled in a case involving Texas’ new abortion statute known as S.B. 8, finding in December 2021 it was unconstitutional. A 2018 Texas Lawyer article described him this way:
Because of Peeples’ reputation for handling delicate matters without a hint of politics in his decisions, Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Nathan Hecht once referred to him as the judicial “gold standard” for handling hot cases.
Judge Peeples will hear and rule on the motion to recuse Judge Fitzpatrick in advance of a motion for new trial filed by Ms. Goesling. Her lawyers filed that motion after a review of the original jury verdict form showed the jurors answered a question that was worded differently than the language Judge Fitzpatrick had approved and read into the record in open court.
The case is Kimberly Goesling v. American Airlines et al., Cause No. 342-314565-20 in the 342nd Judicial District Court in Tarrant County. Visit metooaa.com for more information.
Dallas-based Miller Bryant LLP is a national practice representing catastrophically injured people and those wronged through the negligent acts of others. More information at https://www.miller-bryant.com/.