WACO, Texas (KWTX) A week after a Waco lawyer was arrested on child sex crimes, he's still representing clients charged with similar crimes.
Kyle Layman. (Jail photo)
Attorney Kyle Layman's defense attorney Robert Callahan says Layman has the right to keep practicing.
"He is still allowed to practice law at this point he still has the same rights that are afforded to every other person under the constitution."
Layman is facing three charges of criminal solicitation of a minor for sex.
Arrest affidavits showed some graphic text conversations that he allegedly was having with the 14-year-old daughter of one of his clients, which was later taken over by a sheriff investigator.
"While these are very serious allegations and they're very strong allegations and he is obviously taking it very seriously, they remain allegations at this point," Callahan said.
Judge Matt Johnson of the 54th District Court says a group of judges agreed to remove Layman, at his request, from the public defendant appointment list.
"We conferred via phone, via text message and we had to make a quick decision and had to be informed quickly of what Mr. Layman's decision was," the judge said.
A week long KWTX investigation with open records documents revealed Layman continues to represent 16 felony clients who retained his services...five of those cases are defendants also facing child crimes.
Court records reveal Layman also has over 40 misdemeanor clients. Some are court appointed.
Johnson says Layman still has the right to practice, while his case makes it way through the legal process.
"I mean we can't just go in and remove him from all the cases he's been appointed on. Once the attorney client relationship is established, you can't separate the attorney from the client unless it's at the request of the client or at the request of the attorney," Johnson said.
Defense attorney Callahan says Layman has contacted his clients and filled them in on what’s going on, "He's just contacting the clients and letting them know, ‘Ok you have the option if you want to of staying with me, or you have the option of retaining new counsel.’"
If layman is convicted on the three counts of child sex charges, he faces two and 10 years in prison on each count, a $10,000 fine, and discipline from the Texas Bar Association.
"It is a serious allegation," Johnson said.