Judge Bill Harmon

Do you think, based on this video, that the judge’s impartiality in a DWI case might reasonably be questioned?

3 responses to “Judge Bill Harmon”

  1. Mark, specifically, in response to your question:

    “Do you think, based on this video, that the judge’s impartiality in a DWI case might reasonably be questioned?” I guess that depends on who is viewing the movie. The target audience is obviously teenage drivers. The message is very straight forward: “If you get a DWI arrest and or conviction it is a very bad thing and can cause people to lose their lives and ruin your future”. Deterrence. Now, say one of these sweet little darling’s picks up a case and it lands in Judge Harmon’s Court and they have seen this video – sure – they might have a thought or two that this judge seems very serious about the topic at hand – but taken as a whole – and watching the video very carefully – I personally see NO REASONABLE affirmative answer to your question. Specifically what we are really talking about is that I personally see NO violation here of the Texas Judiciary Rules of Conduct – specifically CANON 4, which reads in part:

    Conducting the Judge’s Extra-Judicial Activities to Minimize the Risk of Conflict with Judicial Obligations: A. Extra-Judicial Activities in General. A judge shall conduct all of the judge’s extra-judicial activities so that they do not:
    (1) Cast reasonable doubt on the judge’s capacity to act impartially as a judge; or
    (2) Interfere with the proper performance of judicial duties.

    B. Activities to Improve the Law. A judge may:
    (1) Speak, write, lecture, teach and participate in extra-judicial activities concerning the law, the legal system, the administration of justice and non-legal subjects, subject to the requirements of this Code;

    To be transparent to your broad base readership: Judge Harmon is a friend and colleague of mine. God only knows he needs NO-ONE to “carry his water” here. And God also knows “MY own WATER is too damn heavy for anyone to carry when I take my “Bullworth off the bench pre-spring-break don’t drink/toke and drive school talking gig” to fragile burbs High Schools” for anyone to carry.

    In any case here is my support for what I say: Judge Harmon at all times was FACTUAL in his rendition of the law. He was FACTUAL in stating the long term harm that “can happen” to someone who goes through this experience. Damned if Billy didn’t come across down right Statesman like. I also watched the credits and his name was NOT listed. People will always “think” what they wish after seeing even a regular ‘popcorn” movie. But – I, after looking at this film see no REASON to believe a reasonable person would think Judge Harmon was anything but factual.

    On balance – in my most humble opinion – The Documentary lacked another important speaker: A defense attorney to point out: 1) Hey, in general I have represented “x’ number of clients charged with this or that misdemeanor or felony DWI type case, and the only thing more shocking than the event was the therapy they needed after Mommy and daddy had to spend their Trust fund to pay my fee to keep their candy-arse out of the pokey. 2) Even if there is enough proof to get arrested – it’s goanna take a Defense attorney to go to trial or prepare their defense to show the level of proof is NOT Beyond a reasonable Doubt – IE: Conviction….beat the rap but not the ride. I seriously think this would have neatly balanced out the piece by showing ALL parties involved in the process: 1) Cops, 2) Prosecutors, 3) Judges, 4) Defendants’ and 5) Defense lawyers.

    In closing I will only say – I have learned (and maybe it’s just me – but the Road to hell is paved with Good Intentions….I have the shoes to prove it. Consequently, I’d rather take up skydiving again than EVER; EVER give another public speech to High School students OFF THE BENCH about ANY TOPIC. I’ll wait my sweet time till they got some ‘skin in the game” and have their OWN freedom to lose and are standing in front of me with a case number!

    God Bless and Y’all have a safe Holiday

    Judge Larry Standley

  2. NO. There have been TV commercials for many, many years saying, “DON’T MESS WITH TEXAS.” This is not very subtle code for “If you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime.” Especially if you don’t have money, you WILL do time if you get a DWI in Texas. If you want to complain about Texas “justice” complain about how the poor & mostly people of color wind up going to prison at a much, much higher rate than rich white people. I was wrongly convicted in Bill Harmon’s Court by a jury. But it wasn’t the judge’s fault, it was the fault of a court appointed attorney who actually helped the prosecution & a prosecutor who illegally told the jury that they could “presume” that I was guilty.I think Bill Harmon is as fair as the injustice system will allow him to be. But the system is broken & only those who can afford to pay get any justice.

    • You are badly brainwashed, Gerald.
      Who appointed the court-appointed attorney? Bill Harmon.
      And who let the prosecutor get away with arguing that the jury could presume that you were guilty? Bill Harmon (and the court-appointed attorney that he appointed).

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