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Letter to the Editor: Judge praised for going against norm

Editor:

In reference to your article “Judge rejects plea agreement in DUI maiming case,” it seems apparent that the judge in the case easily could have accepted the plea agreement for the defendant. However, in using his judicial discretion in not accepting it, he went against the norm of accepting plea agreements.

I praise the judge in exercising this ability, because in doing so, he isn’t subscribing to the idea that all cases should be treated the same or receive the same penalty. As with any career, I think that after doing it for a long enough, judges may fall victim to treating a certain crime with the same mentality and punishment every time, without considering any unique circumstances to each case. Between the judges and lawyers, generally a friendly working relationship within the courtroom has been established and to some extent, a degree of predictability about what can be expected in some cases.

I applaud the coverage of such actions, as many times people shy away from making these types of decisions due to the possible shame associated with them. I think that judges standing up against fulfilling the “daily grind” mentality to seek true justice shall be acknowledged more often, as is the case in the article.

AJ Valdes-Recio, Harrisonburg

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