Think we have some goofy politicians and judges here…be happy you’re not in Houston.
This week voters there kicked Juvenile Judge Glenn Devlin to the curb. He had a well-deserved track record of being tough on teen criminals. Some had argued too tough, favoring incarceration of young offenders, but he and the other Harris county juvenile judges … all republicans apparently got caught up in a blue wave there Tuesday that swept them from office.
The day after Judge Devlin’s fellow jurists took their losses in stride…did what voters in previous elections had elected them to do: properly adjudicate the cases before them.
But not Glenn Devlin. Apparently upset at losing, published reports indicate Judge Devlin released half to two-thirds of the defendants who appeared before him that day... only asking them: if he approved their release did they plan to murder anyone?
The charges according to Houston news reports ranged from misdemeanors all the way up to violent crimes like aggravated robbery, but a public defender says Devlin said: “'This is obviously what the voters wanted.”
No, what they wanted was the Judge to earn the money taxpayers paid him to sit on the bench that day again: to adjudicate the cases, not abdicate his responsibility as a Judge.
Word is, Judge Devlin’s been unavailable to further explain his decisions.
In the days since, prosecutors, public defenders, criminal reform advocates have all expressed concern about the Judge’s action.
The public rendered its verdict on Tuesday. Judge Devlin’s actions on Wednesday, made it very clear. Houston voters made the right decision in sending him packing.