Judge Watch: FBI and Texas Rangers Arrest Another Texas Judge
Last Thursday, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Texas Rangers continued their state-wide clean up of the Texas judicial system as Texas authorities arrested Athens, Texas municipal judge Monica Corker for the charge of Abuse of Official Capacity.
Working with the federal law enforcement experts, the local District Attorney’s office with the County Sheriff took Judge Corker into custody for the one charge, and after inventorying the contents of her purse, charged her with a second felony — Fraudulent Possession of Identifying Information.
Judge Corker posted bond and was released from jail that same afternoon. You can bet we’ll be hearing more on this case, especially since rumors are flying around the local cummunity that Judge Corker isn’t going to be the only official that will be charged.
By way of recap, let’s review some other bad acts of Texas Judges that we’ve posted here on the blog (and this isn’t a complete list, by the way):
El Paso State District Judge Manuel Barraza arrested by the FBI on four counts of federal criminal activity that is being described as taking bribes and soliciting sex from defendants appearing before him; the grand jury indictment includes three charges of “wire fraud and deprivation of honest services” and a fourth charge of lying to a federal agent. (Judge Barraza’s trial just got moved to January 2010.)
Tarrant County municipal court Judge Tiffany Lewis took a plea after the drama of stopping trial just before opening statements began, pleading guilty to a felony charge of misapplication of fiduciary funds (she’s alleged to have taken around $70,000), whereupon she was sentenced to 60 days in jail and 10 years probation. (The State Bar of Texas already ordered her to payback the money that was taken.)
Galveston Federal District Judge Samuel Kent investigated and arrested for sex crimes and indicted (formally charged) with three federal crimes: (1) two counts of abusive sexual contact and (2) one count of attempted aggravated sexual abuse. (Judge Kent’s already serving jail time.)
Houston Criminal Court at Law Judge Donald Jackson was indicted in September 2009 for official oppression and the Judicial Commission has stopped Judge Jackson from taking the bench.
Dallas County State District Judge Bruce Priddy was arrested for DUI, sued by the Texas Attorney General on campaign finance issues, “publicly warned” by the State Commission on Judicial Misconduct, and suspended from the practice of law — and all the while, kept right on hearing cases from the bench. (Judge Priddy’s still on the bench today.)
Chief Justice of the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals Sharon Keller was sued in civil court, forced to update her personal financial statements which added over $2 million, and faced trial this summer for her actions on the day that Michael Richard was executed. (There hasn’t been a decision at this juncture on that formal trial of Justice Keller as of today.)
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