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Misconduct Report: November 2014

Chris McFadden

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Chris McFadden
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Current Court Information:
Georgia Court of Appeals
Title:   Judge
Salary:  $166,000
Service:
Active:   2011-2016
Preceded by:   Edward Johnson
Past position:   Private practice, Christopher J. McFadden, Attorney at Law
Personal History
Undergraduate:   Oglethorpe University
Law School:   University of Georgia

Chris McFadden is a judge of the Georgia Court of Appeals. He was elected in 2010 and his term expires in 2016.[1]

Education

McFadden received his undergraduate degree from Oglethorpe University and J.D. from the University of Georgia.[2]

Career

Prior to his election to the court, McFadden worked in solo practice at his own firm, Christopher J. McFadden, Attorney at Law.[3]

Elections

2010

McFadden ran against Edward Johnson, Adrienne Hunter-Strothers, Antoinette Davis, Stan Gunter, James Babalola and David N. Schaeffer in the general election. In the general election runoff on November 30, he defeated Antoinette Davis, winning 62% of the vote.[4][5]

Main article: Georgia judicial elections, 2010

Notable cases

New trial ordered in rape case


William Jeffrey Dumas was convicted by a jury of repeatedly raping a woman with Down syndrome who was 24 at the time. Judge McFadden, after sentencing Dumas to 25 years in prison, ordered a new trial, because he was not convinced that Dumas was guilty. The judge's reasoning centered around his observations that the victim did not "behave like a victim."[6]

The judge's motion for a new trial did state that there was sufficient evidence to sustain the two rape charges and one aggravated sodomy charge against Dumas. However, the judge's justification for granting a new trial hinged on the woman's lack of outcry. He wrote,

[The woman] testified that, in a twelve-hour period, Mr. Dumas raped her three times...that he did so while the two of them were in a modest-sized house along with two responsible adults who were charged with protecting her; and that those attacks were interspersed with periods when she interacted with those protectors and had ample opportunity to ask for their help.[6][7]

According to the court documents, the incidents occurred in October of 2010 while others were in the house and the woman did not initially cry for help. The woman was staying with family friends while her mother and stepfather were working. Dumas was a friend of her hosts. The woman brought up the situation to one of her hosts later, and evidence of intercourse was discovered.

The prosecuting attorney, Scott Ballard, said he felt "disgust" at the judge's ruling and stated,

I had to go visit the Down syndrome woman who was the victim of the rape and tell her that even though a jury had convicted her assailant of the crime, the judge was giving the guy a new trial...Her parents were, as you can image, outraged. …I just hope we can get some justice.[8][9][7]

David Perry, in an opinion piece on CNN's website, defended the woman by writing, "People with intellectual disabilities, even those with strong communication skills, can be vulnerable to sexual assault because they are unsure of what's right or wrong or whether they can say no."[10]

Judge McFadden was presiding over this case as a temporary Superior Court judge. An appeal of the decision would go to the Georgia Court of Appeals, where McFadden also sits as judge. However, he has recused himself from the case, following a request by the District Attorney's Office.[8][9]

See also

External links

References


GeorgiaGeorgia Supreme CourtGeorgia Court of AppealsGeorgia Superior CourtsGeorgia State CourtsGeorgia Juvenile CourtsGeorgia Probate CourtsGeorgia Magistrate CourtsGeorgia Municipal CourtsUnited States District Court for the Middle District of GeorgiaUnited States District Court for the Northern District of GeorgiaUnited States District Court for the Southern District of GeorgiaUnited States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh CircuitGeorgia countiesGeorgia judicial newsGeorgia judicial electionsJudicial selection in GeorgiaGeorgiaTemplatewithoutBankruptcy.jpg