Today, I learned two interesting stories about Judge Lykos and her views on when it is appropriate to incarcerate someone and when it is not. In my humble opinion, Pat Lykos being "mean" is just the tip of the iceberg in dealing with her lack of qualifications to be District Attorney.
My first story that I learned today was reading the comments of "Mr. Roboto" on the Chronicle comments page (yes, I know I usually bash the posters over there, but this was rather interesting) when he wrote:
STATE REPORT - TEXAS: CHILD ABUSER CHOOSES NORPLANT OVER PRISON
Ida Jean Tovar, unmarried mother of three, "is the firstHoustonian to escape a prison sentence by agreeing to have aNorplant birth-control device" and a 10-year probation period. In a statement issued to TX District Judge Pat Lykos, Tovar expressed her "wish that she have the implant" over a 10-year prison term for shaking her two-month-old son so violently that it resulted in brain damage.
Judge Lykos: "It was my idea. Ifelt like [the crime] was worth 10 years in the penitentiary, butI'm also very aware of the early release problem." Prison overcrowding in TX "has resulted in numerous early releases,"meaning that Tovar's 10-year sentence might have been closer totwo years and an early release "without much supervision."Tovar's case is not the nation's first. In January, CA Superior Circuit Judge Howard Broadman, "angered civil libertarians" whenhe "forced a woman to get such an implant as a condition of probation for beating her children" (John Makeig, HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 3/6).
Very interesting. A quick Google search of Ida Jean Tovar on the web does show that there is documentation of the case in several books, actually, but none that are easily read on the web.
So, let's see, a mother permanently brain damages her child, but that's okay with Judge Lykos, as long as the woman doesn't have any more children.
Call me crazy, but a woman that intentionally hurts her 2-month-old child to the point that the child has brain damage needs to be buried under the jail.
Now, let this serve as a contrast:
In The State of Texas vs. Mark Alonzo Garner, prosecutors Jeff Laird and (now-Judge) Mike Anderson were trying the case of a serial rapist against highly-respected defense attorney, Connie Williams. The defendant (not real big on the idea of going to trial on a case where he would most likely be sentenced to life) sought to delay the trial by coming up with a list of names that would "help his case" in the middle of trial. (NOTE: This isn't an entirely unusual trial tactic by some defendants).
None of these "helpful witnesses" for the Defendant (who were all law abiding students at Texas Southern University, by the way) had been subpoenaed (probably due to the fact that the Defendant had decided he wanted them after the jury had been selected).
So, what does the Honorable Judge Lykos order done? She doesn't want to delay the trial, and yet, she doesn't want to deprive the serial rapist of his witnesses.
Well, she orders all of those witnesses arrested, of course.
Yep, you read that right. She ordered the investigating officers from the TSU Police Department to go round up 3 or 4 of these students and take them into custody. None of them were under subpoena and none of them had any notice that their presence was even desired in court. My understanding is that at least one of the arrested witnesses even ended up spending the night in jail. (And if you are paying attention, that means that he spent the night in jail when he had done absolutely nothing wrong!)
When the TSU students were finally able to make it to court, none of them knew a damn thing about Mr. Garner or his case.
By the way, if you like doing math like Lykos does , try this equation:
No legal basis + unlawful incarceration = Civil Rights Violation
So, let's do a real quick recap here.
Shake your baby to the point he has brain damage -- you get probation with birth control.
Do absolutely nothing wrong but have a serial rapist know your name -- spend the night in jail.
NOTE: I want to stress for the record that my source on the Garner case is absolutely not Judge Mike Anderson. I do not wish to cause him any type of grief if anyone was to make that incorrect assumption.
NOTE # 2: Mark Alonzo Garner still got life in prison. But from a jury, not Lykos.