A Day in the Life of a Judge

A Seattle judge who drew national attention — some of it pretty nasty — after a sex offender he decided not to jail for failure to register kidnapped and raped a woman,  allowed a Seattle Times reporter to spend the day with him on the bench, watching and listening as he made his decisions. 105 decisions, few of them easy. “Sometimes I will be wrong,” Judge Ron Kessler said.

Reporter Christine Clarridge wrote “Kessler isn’t naive. He knows that defendants can and do lie, that defense attorneys want their clients released under nearly any circumstance and prosecutors are bound to warn of the worst outcomes.

But Kessler is also aware that some defendants may have every right to remain free pending trial and that some may even be innocent.

“Every judge has to confront the element of risk,” he said. “That’s what we do.””

I only wish this story from the Seattle Times were longer and more detailed, but I think writers will find the view from the bench eye-opening.