Andrew J. Mytelka argued in the First Court of Appeals on behalf of Appellees, Sonya and Rosemarie Porretto. In January 2009, attorneys with the Firm won a judgment in excess of $5 million on behalf of the Porrettos. In that case, the trial court also found that the State of Texas, through its General Land Office and Jerry Patterson, Land Commissioner, had unconstitutionally taken the Porrettos’ beachfront property, among other findings. The panel consisted of Justices Keyes, Higley, and Bland. The panel requested additional briefing on, among other things, the impact of the Texas Supreme Court’s recent opinion in Carol Severance v. Jerry Patterson, et al. The Severance opinion held, on certified questions from the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, that private beachfront properties on Galveston Island’s West Beach are not impressed with a right of public use under Texas law without proof of an easement.
The GH&A team for trial and appeal included partners, Andrew J. Mytelka and Stephen G. Schulz, and associates, Kelly-Ann F. Clarke, Angie Olalde, Lucie Shipp Tredennick, and Austin L. Webber.