Lame-duck judge turns loose young defendants, resets his cases for January, and then misses court

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Judge

A Republican Harris County juvenile court judge skipped court on Nov. 8 after losing his re-election bid Tuesday and releasing almost every juvenile defendant who appeared before him Wednesday, according to multiple news reports.

Judge Glenn Devlin’s court coordinator declined on Thursday to say where the judge was, but Harris County Chief Public Defender Alex Bunin took a stab at it, according to the Houston Chronicle story the same day.

“Maybe he is reflecting upon the merits of his new release policy,” Bunin was quoted as saying in the Chronicle story.

That “new release policy” manifested itself Wednesday, the day following Devlin’s re-election loss to his Democratic challenger, Natalia Oakes.

“He was releasing everybody,” Steven Halpert, a public defender, was quoted in the Chronicle story as saying. “Apparently, he was saying that’s what the voters wanted.”

Devlin also reset all cases in his court Wednesday to Jan. 4, which will be the first Friday after Oakes succeeds him, the Chronicle reported.

4 COMMENTS

  1. I was sorry to see this too but with all the R judges being replaced it didn’t go on merit. Straight party and identity politics caused many good judges to lose the bench.

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