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Judge charged with batter after argument over dog waste

It is not common for a sitting judge to be charged with a crime. After all, judges are carefully vetted and held to high ethical standards, as they are trusted with the responsibility of interpreting laws and determining who will prevail in civil (and criminal) proceedings. Nevertheless, it happens. When it does, it can be very embarrassing and disappointing at the same time.

Such is likely the case for a Los Angeles County Superior Court judge who faces a misdemeanor battery charge stemming from an altercation over a dog’s excrement. 

According to a report by the Los Angeles Times, the judge allegedly approached a woman who was walking her dogs and had left the waste she had picked up on the curb in a plastic bag. The judge reportedly asked the woman to find a trash can for the dog waste (as opposed to leaving it on the curb), which sparked an argument.

The judge claims that he attempted to walk away, but the woman followed him and confronted him in his driveway. He further claims that the woman pushed him, and that he pushed her back, causing her to fall down. The woman called police and claimed that she suffered a cut on her face, a scrape on her shoulder and a bruised wrist.

The story is an important reminder that all citizens, regardless of their professional status are subject to being charged with a crime. This also means that all citizens, regardless of class or status, are entitled to be presumed innocent before being proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. 

Source: ABA Journal.com, Judge charged with battery over dog waste dispute near his home, October 23, 2013

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