In Durham County, a district attorney’s competence is being questioned after repeated run-ins with a North Carolina Superior Court judge. A hearing is underway this week to decide whether the DA should be removed from her position. This is only the second time in the history of North Carolina that proceedings are being held to remove an elected official from office.
Over the past few months, the DA filed numerous documents with the court accusing one judge of making decisions in favor of peopleaccused of crimes with the sole intention of demeaning her. In the motions she filed, she claims he is dishonest, corrupt and has a “reprobate mind.” She further accuses him of taking actions that “raped” crime victims and “kidnapped” their rights.
Apparently, she believes that the judge is not sending enough people to jail. She accuses him of ruling in favor of those appearing before him in criminal court because of a bias against her and not because the charges lack merit.
Affidavits filed with the court claim that the DA has not provided any evidence that the judge committed any wrong. There is a fear that, if she continues to wage war against this judge, she will undercut the credibility of the prosecutor’s office and undermine the entire justice system; if jurors no longer believe the judge can do a good job, they will begin to make up their own laws when deciding legal matters.
Officials believe she should have handled her dispute with the judge privately rather than dragging the entire community into her personal dispute.
Source: WRAL.com, “Lawyer: Durham DA seen as ‘out of control,’” Erin Hartness, 2/20/12