Court Watch NOLA is incredibly gratified for the shout-out from former Tulane President Scott Cowen in last weekend’s Wall Street Journal! President Cowen’s understanding that Tulane could not thrive unless all of New Orleans was rebuilt and revitalized, and his dedication to that mission, has been inspiring, and makes this mention even more special. In the Op-Ed, he attributes New Orleans’ renaissance to citizen activists like Court Watch NOLA’s own volunteers as well as groups like Citizens for 1 Greater New Orleans, and the Metropolitan Crime Commission. To all of our volunteers, this means you! Thank you so much for your hard work over the past seven years.
In local court news, judicial election season is heating up, and Judge Marullo says he’s running again. In the meantime, Judge Herman sentenced a cop-shooter to 50 years, while new City Councilman Jason Williams testified against his own former client in an Orleans Parish Prison contraband case. The Metropolitan Crime Commission also came out with its 2013 court report, and its 2013 judicial efficiency rankings largely parallel CWN’s own. Finally, the DA’s office agreed to a relatively short plea deal in a 2008 murder case, and in explaining the deal said that “Time is the enemy of the prosecutor. This is why we have to keep these cases moving– this is why the criminal justice system needs to work to get these cases to trial quicker.” This focus on making the courts more efficient is, of course (like President Cowen’s Op-Ed), music to CWN’s ears!