Georgia’s new top judge says the state is already seeing the benefits of several years of criminal justice reform. Hugh Thompson took over as the Georgia Supreme Court’s chief justice in August. He said in an interview with GPB the adult prison population is stabilizing. He also said he’s keenly interested in following the juvenile justice reforms the General Assembly enacted earlier this year.
A Georgia Superior Court judge still could face charges after he was given a breath test for alcohol during a traffic stop but let go. Bibb County Superior Court Judge Howard Simms says he entered an in-patient alcohol treatment facility after being stopped Sept. 22.
A veteran judge is stepping down from the bench amid a state investigation into alleged judicial misconduct. Ocmulgee Circuit Superior Court Judge John Lee Parrott submitted his retirement letter to Gov. Nathan Deal on Saturday.
A bulldog has been banned from a Georgia county for life after a child was bitten. Oreo can never return to Chatham County under an agreement approved by a judge. A Chatham County Superior Court Judge approved the consent agreement. It also calls for Oreo's new owner to have the American Bulldog neutered and placed with a rescue agency or animal shelter.
Former state court judge Brooks Blitch III and former federal judge Jack Camp were among several judges who stained the image of the Georgia judiciary in recent years. The Georgia Supreme Court now has revoked Blitch's license to practice law and accepted Camp's voluntary surrender of his license.
Gov. Deal is pushing more alternative programs for non-violent drug offenders. It's a way to deal with the state's staggering prison budget. Several judges around the state already run alternative sentencing programs. One lesson they say Deal can learn from their experience is to find the money to pay for the best treatment available.
Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue has appointed the director of Georgia's beleaguered public defender system as a Superior Court judge on the Griffin Judicial Circuit. The governor appointed Mack Crawford to the bench on Wednesday. Crawford was a member of the Georgia House before he was named the director of the Georgia Public Defender Standards Council.