Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Second District Court Judge Albert “Pat” Murdoch, How Shocking

The news of a judge being taking into custody at the Second District Court house was shocking and very disappointing to all that follow the courts. For people who understand the legal system it is a fact that you must consider someone innocent until proven guilty. The voting public most likely will view Judge Murdock guilty from the start.

The shame is that Judge Murdoch worked on the bench for close to thirty years. People saw him as a tough but ultimately fair judge. They saw an individual who overcame his own handicap to lead a successful life, and he even played a role in helping young children with handicaps develop their own self-respect. Now people will question the ethics of his behavior and decisions. If found guilty of the things he is accused of he will have let down not only himself but the community as well.

The stress of being a criminal court judge must be great. They have heavy caseloads and long hours. In a short period judges observe more abnormal human behaviors then any normal person would ever likely see in a lifetime. They do not often see the kinder and gentler side of society at it best. The innocent people in their courtrooms are often the victim of horrific crimes. They present themselves as weak and with no control over their environment.

Without family and friends to support judges, and take their minds off their daily duties the strain can lead to the manifestation of unacceptable social behaviors. Perhaps the answer is for courts to seek councilors for these judges, so that they will have someone to communicate with when life appears unacceptable. Support groups that include not just legal personnel but normal everyday citizens could develop a sounding board for judges. The more often and longer judges secluded themselves from the public; the more likely they are to exhibit antisocial behaviors.