POLICE: ART WORTH $300K DESTROYED
Posted January 3, 2018 4:52 p.m. EST
A Dallas woman is facing felony charges after police say she destroyed at least $300,000 worth of sculptures and original paintings - including two original Andy Warhol works - at the River Oaks home of well-known Houston trial lawyer Anthony Buzbee.
Lindy Lou Layman, 29, was charged Saturday with felony criminal mischief in the incident, Houston police said in court documents. Police allege that Layman threw two abstract sculptures and destroyed three original paintings at Buzbee's mansion. She was released on $30,000 bail.
In court, prosecutors said Layman was on a first date with Buzbee, according to KHOU-TV.
Buzbee told police he called Layman an Uber after she became intoxicated, the news station reported, after which she refused to leave and hid inside the home.
The suspect allegedly tore down two original Andy Warhol paintings each worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, the news station reported. Police said she also poured some sort of liquid on paintings.
Layman's LinkedIn profile says she has worked as a freelance court reporter.
Buzbee is a high-profile attorney who successfully defended former Gov. Rick Perry in an abuse-of-power case.
He hosted a fundraiser at his multimillion-dollar home in June 2016 for then-presidential candidate Donald Trump, though he later said he was "completely" done with Trump's candidacy after a 2005 video of Trump bragging about groping woman surfaced that fall. Buzbee said in October 2016 that he planned to write in veteran Dan Moran on his ballot.
Buzbee later donated $500,000 to Trump's inauguration committee, Law.com reported in April.
He also raised more than $100,000 for Houston mayoral candidate Adrian Garcia during a fundraiser at the home in 2014.
Buzbee's landmark court victory came in 2009, when he won $100 million for Texas City residents affected by toxic discharge from the local BP plant. It was heralded as the largest verdict ever against the oil giant, winning Buzbee much acclaim. A federal judge cut the award by $99 million months later.
His home, which was listed for $14 million before he bought it, "includes five wood-burning fireplaces, a 17th Century French mantle, limestone floors, mahogany ceiling beams and a slate roof that was cut in Spain."
It set a record for a single-family home sale when Buzbee purchased it in 2013. Buzbee said he paid cash for the house but was reluctant to disclose the final sales price.
"I'm all about setting records, but I'm not sure this is one I should be proud of or not," he told the Houston Chronicle at the time. "All I'll say is the owner wasn't budging that much."
Last year, outgoing Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson personally dismissed a drunken-driving case against Buzbee, who was arrested in March 2016 on a charge of misdemeanor driving while intoxicated.