Legal Question in Criminal Law in Georgia

Over the past year my husband has been living a nightmare. Last Oct. he stopped by the "for sale" home which belonged to the deceased father of a friend of mine. He found the back door wide open and entered the home while calling out this friend's name. A few moments later this friend's daughter entered the home. My husband spoke with her at length and left. Two months later he received a notice to appear in Magistrate court where this friend wanted to charge my husband with trespassing. The magistrate judge, who is a close friend of hers, upped the charge to burglary, my husband was arrested, and the nightmare began. In this hearing Kathy(the friend) admitted that the house had been left open by the realtor 5 days earlier, nothing was missing or damaged from/in the home, and she had the house "dusted" for fingerprints at her own expense and my husbands were not found. Eventually, the DA dismissed all charges as "lacking merit." But, by this time we had spent $5000.00 in legal fees. Kathy(the friend) is the owner/ editor of the local newspaper and the Magistrate Judge is an elected position. This judge has been a guest at Kathy's parties at her house. When our attorney asked this judge what he was thinking when he didn't throw this out, he said "I just did what Kathy wanted." My question is this": if we file an official complaint against this judge can he or his cronies retaliate in any way? The case was dropped...there was no "not guilty" ruling. While we want this judge called on the carpet for the way he disregarded the total lack of evidence, we are not financially able to defend another attack. We have typed and ready the official complaint form ready to mail to the Judicial Qualification Commission...should we mail it?

Asked on 10/06/13, 5:44 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Robert Gardner Hicks, Massey & Gardner, LLP

If the Judge made a decision based on a personal relationship rather than the law then you should mail it. If he tries to retaliate in any way (which I don't really see how he could), let the JQC know. They will be just as interested in retaliation as the would the original conduct.

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Answered on 10/07/13, 8:40 am

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