I’ve annoyed a great number of electrons writing about the unaccountability of law enforcers. However, law enforcers aren’t the only unaccountable individuals in the “justice” system. What happens to judges who issue bad court orders?
A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday in favor of a Virginia man who, as a teen, was once ordered by a lower court to be photographed while masturbating in the presence of armed police officers.
That warrant was ostensibly part of an ongoing sexting investigation into the then-teen, Trey Sims, who had exchanged explicit messages with his then-15-year-old girlfriend. Her mother reported the incident to the Manassas City Police Department in January 2014.
Eventually, the detective assigned to the case, David Abbott, obtained a signed warrant to take photographs of Sims’ naked body—including “the suspect’s erect penis”—so that he could compare them to Sims’ explicit messages.
If you were a judge and a law enforcer came to you asking for a warrant to force a teenage boy to masturbate while he filmed it, what would you do? A decent person would tell the law enforcer to go pound sand. But there is a judge out there who felt that the officer’s request was reasonable enough that he issued the warrant. That raises an important question, what happens to the judge who issued that warrant now that a higher court has ruled against the validity of that warrant? I would argue that any judge who issues such a warrant is deserving of reprimand.
I actually can’t recall a case where a judge was reprimanded when a higher court ruled that a warrant they issued was erroneous. You would think some kind of reprimand would be issued to discourage other judges from issuing similar erroneous warrants.