For over a century, Texans have relied on the underfunded and understaffed State Commission on Judicial Conduct (SCJC) to field grievances against Lone Star State judges. Last year, the commission reviewed around 1,700 complaints or almost half of Texas’ 3,700 total judges. Fewer than 5% of complaints were sustained, and the commission, with a staff of just over a dozen, handled many of those disciplinary actions in private, meaning the public will never know the names of the crooked judges.
This Saturday on the East Side, Texans can support a new nonprofit that has a comprehensive plan to hold black-robed offenders accountable. Under the leadership of Jennifer Lundy, Texans for Judicial Accountability will work with state leaders and policymakers to place cameras in all courtrooms, disclose the names of all judges found guilty of misconduct, and significantly expand the number of investigators staffed at the SCJC. Her nonprofit calls for judges to be open, professional, and transparent in their dealings.
Judges “should not be swayed by partisan interests, public clamor, or fear of criticism,” part of the mission statement reads at TexansforJudicialAccountability.org and should not “engage in behavior that is harassing, abusive, prejudiced, or biased.”
The Weekly remains the only Tarrant County publication willing to routinely publish accounts of scofflaw judges — from the 231st District Court, where falsified court documents abound, to lawless visiting retired judges who double-dip off the state and county retirement systems while earning a cool $750 a day filling in for elected judges who may or may not have legitimate reasons for taking time off.
Weekly staff writer Edward Brown will emcee the 6 p.m. event at 2000 Beach St which will feature Eric Carroll (host of Dad Talk Today), Dr. Brooks McKenzie (child development psychologist and court reform advocate), Brandon Hall (conservative activist), Manuel Mata (citizen journalist and cop watcher), and Lundy as the headline speaker.
Requested donation for admittance to the two-hour event is $50, but any contribution will be gladly accepted. Details are available on Facebook.