For the third straight election cycle Kaufman voters have decided to vote out the incumbent District Attorney. Each situation was unique, but if there one thing you can count on in Kaufman county, it’s change.
To that end, the Kaufman electorate nominated Mike McLleland as the GOPs candidate for DA next November. Sans opponent (where are my Kaufman Libertarians?), Mike has already won the November election and will be sworn in in January.
I have a lot of good friends and colleagues at the Kaufman DA’s office. I know many are worried about what to expect, and if they will have the same gig come January. In this economy, I wouldn’t wish job insecurity on anyone. Fortunately, Mr. Mclelland has already promised not to make any personnel changes.
I hope so. Kaufman county has managed to keep a good group of prosecutors together for the past 4 years. We don’t always see eye to eye, but I respect them as capable adversaries.
I’ve opined before that the Rick Harrison tenure as Kaufman DA has been a success. To recap, Rick opened the files, ended the rampant animosity between State and defense bar (saving taxpayers a pile of money), and started a highly successful pre trial diversion program. Kudos.
What could me made better? Well, since I asked, here are 2 hopey changey ideas I have off the top of my head.
1. Quit filing misdemeanor marijuana cases. Really, nothing registers lower on the “Who gives a shit” meter than misdemeanor weed cases. Make them all class C paraphenalia if you have to, but these ding dong joint-in-the-console cases take up a lot of time with no benefit to public safety.
2. Post plea, we should thumbprint defendants in court. It’s only a matter of time before some jail chain inmate takes a header off the stairs and sues the county for millions. I know this may take some coordinating with the court and district clerk, but it’s a no brainer (literally, some inmate’s brain cavity is going to empty one day because of this).
I won’t hold my breath on 1. I’ve been advocating for 2 for a while.