HOUSTON – A woman who killed her cheating husband by running him over will have to pay more money to her lawyer, who she sued for overcharging her, a Harris County jury decided Friday.
Jurors sided with Houston attorney George Parnham, saying he did not breach his duty to Clara Harris during her high-profile 2003 murder trial.
The jurors also ruled that Harris should pay Parnham $250 still owed for expenses from the murder trial, $389,443 for the costs of Parnham's attorney during the two-week civil trial and an additional $70.
Harris, 50, was sentenced to 20 years in prison for repeatedly running over her husband, David Harris, 44, with her Mercedes-Benz in a hotel parking lot in 2002 after confronting him with his mistress. The lawsuit claimed Harris hired Parnham for $75,000 but wound up paying more than $235,000.
Harris and Parnham never had a written agreement. Dean Blumrosen, Harris' attorney, said his client was owed between $90,000 and $135,000.
Harris' lawsuit also claimed that Parnham had her sign paperwork he said would help preserve her estate but was really a $300,000 promissory note and security agreement listing her homes and dental practice as collateral.
Parnham denied the allegations. Charles Babcock, who represented Parnham, said Parnham had to take out a $90,000 loan to pay experts, consultants and others who aided in Harris' defense.
A jury last year ordered Clara Harris to pay $3.75 million to her former in-laws in a separate civil case.