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SCOTUS officially endorses hot judge on prosecutor action

I wish I could say I was surprised by this, but I’m not.

The U.S. Supreme Court rejected an appeal Monday from Charles Dean Hood, a Texas death row inmate who complained that he was denied a fair trial because his trial judge and prosecutor had engaged in a secret years-long affair.

Announced without comment from the court, the rejection appears to put the issue of the amorous judge and prosecutor to rest for future Hood appeals, though defense lawyers said they were evaluating additional litigation options.

“No one should be prosecuted for a parking ticket, let alone for capital murder, by the district attorney who has had a sexual affair with the judge handling the case,” said Andrea Keilen, director of the Texas Defender Service, which represents Hood. “We will continue to zealously represent Mr. Hood, as we believe his case was marred by a fundamental injustice.”

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals rejected that argument in September, ruling 6-3 that Hood’s lawyers waited too long to raise the issue on appeal — despite defense claims that the affair was impossible to confirm until 2008, when a court ordered the now-retired judge and prosecutor to answer questions under oath.

More here and here. Basically, the CCA and now the Supreme Court have averted their eyes and are hoping no one will notice the roach on the table. I don’t even know what else to say, so I’ll just let Grits sum it up: “This whole situation stinks to high heaven”.

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One Comment

  1. Cb says:

    Something to keep in mind is that the jury made the conclusions in the case and sentenced the man to death. Not the judge. If the judge made some crucial wacky rulings then the defendant would have a better argument for a new trial.

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