Saturday, March 7, 2009

Elizabeth Shelton's Odyssey

I've already reminded myself that if I ever get pulled over for drinking and driving, tell the cops I'm a judge. I noticed last week the County Judge of Montgomery County availed himself of that same defense.

But failing that, and since I'm unlikely to be traveling with a black robe and a gavel as props to help outwit the cops (who needs props for that, anyway?), I could probably convince them that I'm a judge's daughter.

That might get me out of an arrest, or, like Shelton, might let me get away with murder. And it might just get me a chance to sue the guy I hit while I was three times the legal limit and killed my boyfriend (I imagine you in that role, Seaton). And then again, I just might get to have to pay for only half of my legal defense, or better yet have my daddy pay the only half that we're charged, because the lawyer that represents me gets a bunch of juicy criminal appointments from daddy.

To be fair, I can somewhat understand this visiting judge's statements that community service for jail time working as a trusty is the norm in other counties. It's not in Harris County, probably because of our "tuff on crime" former DA, even though it somewhat makes sense to do it that way. Our probation department is amazingly underfunded and understaffed, so whatever it takes to get people out of supervision the fastest is probably a benefit to everyone involved.

And if not for all of the dirty laundry in the case already, the story probably wouldn't get much traction. But--there's plenty more dirty laundry in this case to go around because it appears that the visitig judge was ex parte'd. Was he a willing participant? Probably not--he did what was common in other counties that don't have policies written by prosecutors with short-penis syndrome. But who told him to do it? Was it really a member of the probation department, who would be allowed to discuss these things, or was it someone else? The fact that the judge doesn't know is a bit troubling, and of course you'd think that local probation folks would not have done this because they know it's not the norm in Harris County, which the judge claims to have been told was the case.

Sounds like ol' Judge Shelton or one of his close buddies may have gotten on the horn with the visiting judge and made a few false statements. The visiting judge should have investigated who was calling and the veracity of their claims, but because it's so normal everywhee else he has plenty of plausible deniability.

The real question here is what the ADA who is in charge of the case will do. Will he seek to undo the ruling of the visiting judge and make Shelton follow the terms of her probation? My bet is no way in Hell. But if he does, I'll be the first to congratulate him on holding those with conections as accountable as those without.

By the way--this is yet another instance of those being connected to the system being treated very favorably by it, despite Harris County ADA's posting in this very blog that they treat everyone equally. Someting tells me they just don't see it.


Anonymous said...

Just don't tell the cops you're a CIA agent. They'll shoot ya dead.

Rage Judicata said...

That guy wasn't a real CIA agent though. I am. See here officer, here's my glasses with a funny nose and moustache.