Judge Allegedly Solicits Sex from a Defendant, Charged with Official Oppression
I've written about Texas Judge Sharon Keller's disciplinary trial for closing her courthouse to a last-minute death row appeal while meeting with a repairman several times
While there can be an honest divergence of opinion about whether what Judge Keller did was unethical or unprofessional, if the allegations against this other Texas judge prove true, there is no question that he's guilty of some serious professional misconduct and at least a little criminal behavior.
Harris County Criminal Court-at-Law Judge Donald W. Jackson stands accused of official oppression
, a misdemeanor, for allegedly offering to obtain a different attorney for a defendant in exchange for sex.
According to the indictment, Jackson told the defendant, a 27 year-old
woman accused of driving while intoxicated, that he would find her:
a different attorney to get her case dismissed if she would be
interested in [Jackson] and enter into a relationship with him that
was more than a one-night stand.
of all, if true, it's a little strange that the judge thought he could
negotiate with a woman to get her to "be interested" in him. That
hasn't worked for anyone since, well, ever. Feigned interest, sure, but the real thing? Not a chance.
Second of all, it
doesn't seem like that great of a deal for the defendant. After all,
what's a different attorney going to do for her? If the judge is going
to dismiss the case anyway, why not just come out and say it? Why all
the extra steps?
(Maybe the judge wanted to get a friend involved so he could try and arrange for this kind of fee agreement
Finally, a misdemeanor? Seriously? A judge soliciting a sexual favor from a defendant seems like felony material to me.
Judges Allegedly Behaving Badly: Texas' Donald Jackson (WSJ Law Blog