Judge Says God Told Him to Do It
Judge Jack Robison apparently had second thoughts about denying the defendant's motion for a directed verdict.
As the jurors deliberated in the criminal case, the judge interrupted them. He said that God told him the defendant was not guilty.
"When God tells me I gotta do something, I gotta do it," Robison explained. But for the defendant and the judge, it was too late.
"Went With His Conscience"
The jury convicted Gloria Romero Perez anyway, finding her guilty of child trafficking for bringing a relative from Honduras to Texas. After Robison recused himself, another judge sentenced Perez to 25 years in prison.
The Texas trial is over, but Robison's is just beginning. The state commission on judicial conduct is investigating, according to reports.
"You've got to respect him for what he did," said jury foreman Mark House, who reported the incident. "He went with his conscience."
The commission has privately reprimanded Robison before, when he jailed a man for calling him a fool in a child custody case. The court of public opinion may not be so forgiving, however.
Above the Law, the irreverent voice of legal blogging, suggested the judge is not fit for the bench. Besides, Elie Mystal wrote, God's voice is hearsay.
"The other side should have been allowed to cross-examine... God... before the judge entered his statements into the record," she said.
Of course, the judge didn't swear to tell the truth either. And lawyers never do, but that is another story.
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