October 22, 2021

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Beyond law

Harris County civil court judge George Barnstone resigns next 6 grievances

A Harris County civil court docket decide has resigned amid several allegations of judicial misconduct, which include exhibiting bias or prejudice toward litigants and attorneys on the basis of race, sexual intercourse or socioeconomic standing, in accordance to the Condition Commission on Judicial Conduct.

George Barnstone, of Harris County Civil Court docket at Law No. 1, was the subject of six complaints encompassing at minimum 7 allegations of misconduct. Those people also included statements he employed his judicial workplace to progress his personal interests and produced appointments violating the Texas Federal government Code, which bars conflicts of curiosity, the resignation settlement states.

He signed the settlement on July 12, information show, and state fee Chair David Corridor approved the decision Monday.

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Judicial grievances are not general public. Barnstone did not reply to requests for comment, and a individual hung up following answering a phone variety outlined for the previous decide.

His lawyer, Cris Feldman, issued a statement on Wednesday.

“Rather than engage in the  elongated and invasive process of battling these focused allegations from his several detractors, Decide Barnstone took the large highway and set the public curiosity and the judiciary 1st, by voluntarily resigning,” Feldman reported.
 
Other grievances — all shown in the arrangement — alleged the decide did not comply with the regulation connected to awarding lawyers expenses or statutory curiosity write-up-judgment unsuccessful to give a defendant their proper to be read unsuccessful to take care of attorneys with patience, dignity and courtesy and unsuccessful to demand and sustain purchase and decorum in courtroom proceedings.

The state fee experienced not created any results linked to the issues, and Barnstone’s resignation will take position as an alternative of disciplinary action, the document reads. The resignation, nonetheless, is not an admission of guilt.

Barnstone will not be ready to run for judicial office environment or sit in a judicial capability yet again, the settlement stipulates.

The former choose, a Democrat, took place of work in 2016. His time period was established to expire in 2022.

Harris County Commissioners Court will want to appoint a decide to fill the emptiness, County Attorney Christian D. Menefee reported. That man or woman will provide right until a person is elected in the November 2022 basic election.

The 4 county civil courts at legislation have jurisdiction over all civil matters with a disputed sum up to $250,000. The courts also hear appeals from civil justice courts in Harris County, as well as proceedings on statutory eminent domain and inverse condemnation fits.

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