Menacing Behavior Under the Dome
Witness removed after threatening senators that dare to vote against sanctuary city bill
By Richard Whittaker,
3:06PM, Wed. Apr. 15, 2009
There was nothing secure about the Senate Transportation and Homeland Security Committee today. During public testimony on Senate Bill 358, Houston Republican Sen. Dan Patrick's anti-"sanctuary city" bill, a man was removed after making threats against committee members.
There was initially confusion over Clay Laird's testimony, because somehow he had been listed as against the bill. It became pretty clear that was a clerical error when he said he would come to the home of anyone that opposed the bill.
He asked Committee Chair John Carona, R-Dallas, "John, have you ever been to an execution?" Laird had: His mother was raped and murdered in the 1980s by a recently released convict, who was later executed (he did not claim the killer was an illegal immigrant.) His testimony went from moving to scary when he warned legislators that, if they didn't support the bill, he would come "wherever you live [ ] I mean I'm gonna be knocking on your door." Chillingly, he then asked Carona, "You run some properties?"
When Carona told him to wrap up and be cautious because his last comment sounded like a threat, Laird clarified that. "It's not a threat, sir, it's a promise written in blood. It might be yours, it might be mine," he warned.
Carona put the committee into brief recess, had Laird removed from the room, and said he would be looking into pursuing charges for the threats made.
Patrick, by contrast, just put out a Tweet about this morning's meeting: "Emotional testimony today from families who have had family members murdered by illegal aliens."
Got something to say? The Chronicle welcomes opinion pieces on any topic from the community. Submit yours now at austinchronicle.com/opinion.
A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.
Jordan Smith, Oct. 4, 2013
Jordan Smith, Aug. 9, 2013
March 23, 2023
March 24, 2023
81st Legislature, Texas Senate, Death Penalty, Transportation, Immigration, Dan Patrick, Clay Laird, John Carona, Sanctuary Cities, The Dan Patrick Files