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Update on Kenneth Bain–His Dad asked Perry to Veto Safe Passing Bill

December 14, 2009

Kenneth Bain will not be going to trial (at least for Meredith Hatch’s death).  Her husband accepted a deal put forth by the DA.  Recently, cases similar to this had not produced much time at all for the defendants and so the prosecutor worked out the following: 2 years in jail and probation for 10 years during which any infraction would send him back to jail.

If they had gone forward with the case the prosecutor wanted to put Meredith’s children on the stand and her husband did not want the boys to have to endure that.

Below are the original details of this tragedy:

To bring you up to date, the Press was all over Perry’s veto, and my open records acquisition findings.  The story made front page headlines in the San Antonio Express, and front page Metro in the Statesman, and Houston Chronicle.  The blogs like austinontwowheels.com, and ATXBS.com are still buzzing.

One of the opposition emails quoted in the SATX article was written by Kenneth Bain of Duncanville:

The proposed law to fine drivers passing too close to bicyclists is absurd.  I bike all the time and I am smart enough to stay off the streets.  Roads are for vehicles not slow bikes.  I want more bike trails.  This law will drive a larger wedge between motorists &bikers.  You will have radical bikers taking license numbers of cars and reporting them because they thought they passed too close.  If you sign this bill you are letting a small minority rule the voting masses and it will not sit well at election time I can assure you.  Let the bill die.

Kenneth Bain’s son is out on bond for plowing down two cyclists in Grand Prairie a year ago.  Both cyclists were killed on impact.  According to news reports, Kenneth Bain Jr. told the police he was up all night at a Bachelor party (the accident occured at 8:15 a.m.).  Police reported that he  failed a field sobriety test at the scene.  By the looks of his daddy’s SUV,  Kenneth Bain probably didn’t even slow, or brake.  Both cyclists were killed on impact.  He was arrested on two counts of intoxication manslaughter, but was out on 50K bond the very next day.  The original intoxication manslaughter charges have now been reduced to manslaughter.

Where is the outrage ?  I hope that the Dallas/Ft. Worth cycling community is watching this case closely.

Another Open Records Request

So I started my Monday at the Office of Perry’s General Counsel.  Once again they seemed stunned that a constituent would hand deliver such a thing.  Again, they tried to get me to mail it, or email it.  Again I had to insist they take it and give me a dated receipt to prove it.  Come on Perry!  This is something your constituents can legally do.

I am filing this second request for public information under the Texas Public Information Act.  On June 22, 2009 I requested among other things: “….logs of phone calls….regarding any objections and or opposition to SB488-the “safe Passing” legislation recently approved by the Texas Legislation by overwhelming margins.  The phone records received from your office on July 7, 2009 are incomplete.  There are major gaps in the chronological numbering of the phone calls in the logs.

  1. Please provide all logs, or documentation of phone calls and office visits regarding any objections and or opposition to SB488.
  2. Please indicate how many emails and phone calls received by Gov. Perry’s office in support of SB488.
  3. Please indicate how support and opposition for SB488 were recorded.

Included in the records I received were several papers with tick marks (see attached copies).

  1. Please explain/indicate if these tick marks were also recorded in the previously submitted phone logs (see attached), or if they were only in regard to the calls immediately prior to the Governor’s veto (as noted on one of the sheets)

It is my understanding that state law requires the reproduction of these records within 10 business days.  Thank you for processing this request for these public documents.  If you have any questions, please contact me at:

The reason for this second request was due to the fact that there are a substantial number of records missing from the Call Logs that they provided.  The only reason I noticed this was because the Governor’s office threw a smokescreen challenging my numbers when the Press descended  upon them.  I went back and scrutinized every single email, and calls, when I noticed that 7 of the opposition emails were regarding another bill entirely, 1 opposition email was counted 4 times, and 1 was actually a proponent.  That brought their total of opposing emails down to a whopping 38!  That is when I discovered the break in the numeric chronology on their call logs.

Please sign the Bike Texas petition here. Over 6,000 signatures and still counting—- We’re not done with you yet Perry…..

Leslie Luciano

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18 Comments leave one →
  1. Warren permalink
    December 17, 2009 8:29 pm

    Thanks for posting! As part of the Dallas bicycling community, and BikeDFW, the North Texas Education and Advocacy group, we are watching closely.

    Sentencing is supposed to be today, and we hope the 2 years is NOT suspended. We gather that the charge was reduced from Intoxication Manslaughter to Manslaughter. While we don’t like this, we at least hope that punishment somewhat commensurate with killing two people comes from this.

  2. December 18, 2009 2:21 am

    Dorba commuters are following it too. We aren’t too happy.

    http://www.dorba2.com/forum/commie-forum/5405

  3. Ben permalink
    December 18, 2009 4:31 am

    I wonder how many fruit cakes the Bain’s will have to sell this Christmas to pay for all this special treatment. They own Mary of Puddin Hill. Never liked their stuff anyway, more of a Collin Street Bakery guy myself.

    Just shaking my head like everyone else with this sentence. I thought Texas was tougher on DUI.

  4. mbebee permalink
    December 21, 2009 1:19 am

    The charge was reduced from Intoxication Manslaughter to Manslaughter as Mr. Bain’s blood alcohol level was .05, which was not above the legal limit in Texas. The state could not legally proceed with the Intoxication Manslaughter charges because Mr. Bain was found according to his blood alcohol level to be below the legally acceptable level that the people of this state have accepted as the law. Although people in Texas may have a very unfavorable opinion about his level being .05, and the possibility that his level may or may not have been higher had law enforcement tested him at 8:25, rather than 10:25, one cannot guess, other than what is experimentally scientific what his blood alcohol levels could have been. Trace amounts of marijuana that suggested fairly recent use was what was reported in the newspaper and I thought that driving under the influence of a drug was an offense, but apparently in Texas, there is no legally defined limit where marijuana is concerned and so there are no parameters to define impairment in regard to marijuana use.

    Everyone can scrutinize and point the finger on what they consider to be discrepancies in this case, but the fact of the matter is that the law was enforced. The sentence that was handed down by the judge may not be the sentence that everyone expected. However, if there were overwhelming evidence that backed up the case that the DA was building, don’t you think that the DA would have proceeded with the case, rather than accepting a plea? For the most part, DA’s have little need or desire to accept plea bargains when they have a winning case and the desires of the victims’ family only weighs partially in their decision. I can’t see where a DA would EVER desire or even CONSIDER having children like Meredith’s sons testify at a trial. If the DA has a strong case, he would not need the children to testify, other than for victim impact purposes. The children were not relative to the facts of the case. It sounds to me like the DA had a poor case and convinced the Hatch family to settle by playing on their emotions in regard to safeguarding their children.

    I don’t think that I’ve heard of too many judges that are willing to throw the book at a fairly young person that did not have a blood alcohol level that was above the legal level in Texas. Othee that what Mr. Bain offered up in his own testimony about that day, there were no witnesses, there really wasn’t any evidence, the state didn’t have much to stand on, other than the fact that he tested .05 and had trace amounts of marijuana, and that they had an imcomplete field sobriety test on an extremely windy day. Being removed from any situation, if you look at both sides of the issue, it makes it difficult.

    While I feel terrible for the families, most specifically, Mrs. Alfaro, her daughter, and Mr. Hatch and his sons, I do feel that as Americans that we have to support the laws that we have in place, or lobby and elect for better laws that are more suited to our needs. We can’t convict someone that doesn’t fail the blood alcohol test, and we can’t convict someone based off of “fairly recent marijuana use”. We can convict on the basis of manslaughter and even then, with jury trials, that’s a slippery slope because evidence is few and far between and all jurors need for an acquittal is reasonable doubt. Proving guilt is not as simple as one might presume. Creating reasonable doubt is far more simple. Although no one seems to believe so, the DA was probably fortunate that the defendent took a plea deal. I doubt that the defendent would have been so forthcoming with his statements, had there been a trial. No one really knows what happened that day, aside from God, the victims, and possibly Mr. Bain.

    People should remember that although his father’s opinion on the proposed cyclist bill was not one that was appropriate given his son’s pending case, it was within his father’s legal right to send a letter in opposition to the bill. I don’t believe that by sending a letter in opposition to the bill, that it favored their position, or pending case at all. I don’t believe that the Bain family has such great political connections, or so much money that they bought a verdict, like some have presumed to be the truth regarding the sentencing on this case. I just think that the case and evidence did not support a conviction where the law was concerned and that’s the reason for the end results of this case.

  5. DubInDallas permalink
    December 21, 2009 3:41 am

    So, mbebee — If I get pulled over, and the wind blows me over to the point that I may actually look plastered drunk, what do I have to do to get the police to wait 2 hours to determine my blood alcohol content?

    So, smoking pot while driving is legal in Texas?

    Your knowledge of the law, and how to work with it is quite good, and I assume you are likely a lawyer, or being advised by one, so hopefully you can straighten me out !

    • mbebee permalink
      December 21, 2009 11:47 pm

      Why do you presume that they took so long to draw his blood for the test?

      In my opinion, the fact that the Grand Prairie Police Department waited 2 hours to make a decision in performing a blood test to determine Bain’s blood alcohol level is ignorance on their part and there’s certainly nothing saying what the results would be, had they drawn 2 hours prior to when they did.

      The fact of the matter is that no can presume what the level would have been. It may have been higher and it may have been unchanged from what they received when they did draw. But, no one will ever know and presumptions and predictions on what is experimentally scientific do not hold up in court. So, while as much as many presumptively say that his level would have been higher, 2 hours earlier than the actual blood draw. According to the law, it’s really all just hearsay. We cannot convict people of being intoxicated when the accepted method of determining intoxication shows that they were within the legal parameters of the law.

      I never stated that it was legal to smoke pot at all. What I did say was that there is NO legally defined level of impairment relative to the amount of marijuana in a person’s system. So, while it may not be legal to use or possess marijuana, there is NO specific level of marijuana that is in a person’s blood that qualifies for impaired, intoxicated, etc…Other states have quantified marijuana relative to impairment, but Texas has not.

      • Kindoalkun permalink
        August 14, 2010 7:42 pm

        I live in a small college town and constantly have to avoid mowing down people on bicycles. I don’t care what the law says, it’s stupid to drive a bicycle around cars. Actually, it’s more than stupid, it’s DANGEROUS and can get you killed. People on bicycles, and frankly even motorcycles, are taking their lives into their own hands. It should be illegal to ride a bicycle anywhere near a car.

    • Family Member permalink
      October 12, 2012 6:44 pm

      To mbebee, I just happen to stumble across this. Reading your comments made me sick. You are right that you do not know all the details! I do!!! They did want her boys on the stand and it was because of the Judge, the Bain’s 5 lawyers, Bain’s connections, money that they come to a deal. The way you write tells me you know and are kidding no one if you think that connections and money will not make a difference!!! Seriously

      A fended family member!!!

      • October 12, 2012 7:36 pm

        I am glad you posted this, Family Member. This still bothers me a lot even with the passage of time. It smacked of the connections, money, and influence reaching possibly to the Governor’s Office. I do not think justice was served for the Hatch and Alfaro families, while understanding the reasons for not wanting the children on the stand.

        We must remain ever vigilant to improve our laws and the application of them as they apply to bicycle motor vehicle interaction. This is as true at the City and County level as it is at the State level.

        Hopefully we can continue to do better in memory of these two victims.

      • Misty permalink
        May 2, 2013 8:21 pm

        Homerjf,

        What money from what source is it that your referring to in regard to Kenneth Bain and his bid for city council? So, you’re assuming based on a financial contribution to his campaign that his allegiance is bought and paid for? Who exactly is it that Mr. Bain is aligned with?

  6. February 17, 2010 4:50 pm

    Morning. I have a habit of browsing the internet and bumped into this site! Overall, this blog is very good, I, for 1 am very fond of the layout. If you get a second can you shoot me an email at bobbymc@live.com and let me know who designed it or where you found it? Much Appreciated.

  7. March 10, 2013 1:35 pm

    And what does politics have to do with this?? Everything!I’m currently running against Ken Bain for a Duncanville City Council at large seat and the same money is there from the same source.

  8. May 10, 2013 7:53 am

    Was it in the Wind, all $25,000.00 worth, or was it in the puddin’ ??

  9. May 13, 2013 6:34 pm

    Looks like Kenneth Bain did not win.

  10. Family Member permalink
    May 15, 2013 1:20 am

    I am glad he didn’t win! 🙂 When I hear the name Ken or Kenneth Bain my heart still skips beat.

  11. GHB permalink
    June 22, 2013 12:41 am

    Kenneth Bain had GHB in his system. That’s why he shouldn’t have been driving and should’ve been charged with intoxication manslaughter.

    • Family Member permalink
      June 22, 2013 4:16 am

      We went back to court today because Kenneth Bain Jr filed a motion to have his alcohol monitor removed. He couldn’t find a a job. Like he doesn’t work for his father. The Judge Lewis only let the spouses say they protest. With in two second she ruled to have his monitor removed today! Kenneth will have to blow in a bag 3x a day at random. Also a bird told us that the Bain Famly will file a motion every year till there is nothing left of his sentence.
      This was not Kenneth Bain’s first or second time hurting someone while drinking and driving and doing drugs. We couldn’t say any thing last time because he was not found guilty. His Father paid them off to drop the case. That is a FACT! He has changed 3 families lives, and countless others lives with his choice to drink, use drugs and get behind the wheel. One person will be disabled for life and 2 deaths on 2 different occasions… Must there be a 3rd? I do not want to relive this every year but I will continue to protest. Has he not made us suffer enough! He only got 2years for killing 2 people! Where is the justice in all this. That blood will be on all there hands especially his parents, who have spent thousands, and used political power to protect their son. There are people that have done less and received much longer sentences!

  12. June 22, 2013 12:57 pm

    Family Member — Keep protesting. The Bains need to see you once a year, and know that you will be there to remind them of the consequences of Bain, Jr.’s actions.

    This remains a flagrant miscarriage of justice in my opinion.

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