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Robert Dawson

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Robert Dawson
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Current Court Information:
United States District Court for the Western District of Arkansas
Title:   Senior Judge
Position:   Seat #2
Appointed by:   Bill Clinton
Active:   4/7/1998 - 8/14/2009
Senior:   8/14/2009 - Present
Preceded by:   Hugh Waters
Succeeded by:   Paul K. Holmes
Personal History
Born:   1938
Hometown:   El Dorado, AR
Undergraduate:   University of Arkansas, B.A., 1960
Law School:   University of Arkansas School of Law, LL.B., 1965
Military service:   U.S. Army 1961 - 1962

Robert Toombs Dawson is an Article III federal judge for the United States District Court for the Western District of Arkansas. He joined the court in 1998 after being nominated by President Bill Clinton. He is serving on senior status.

Early life and education

Dawson graduated from the University of Arkansas with his bachelor's in 1960 and his juris doctoral degree in 1965. Also, Dawson served in the military during the Vietnam conflict serving one year in active duty from 1961 to 1962 in the US Army and the Arkansas National Guard from 1962 to 1965.[1]

Professional career

Dawson spent his pre-judicial legal career as a private practice attorney in Arkansas from 1965 to 1998 before being appointed to the federal bench in 1998.[1]

Judicial career

Western District of Arkansas

Dawson was nominated by President Bill Clinton on November 7, 1997, to a seat vacated by Franklin Waters. Dawson was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on April 2, 1998 on a Senate vote and received commission on April 7, 1998. He assumed senior status on August 14, 2009.[1]

Notable cases

Trial of capital offender and death row inmate (2009)

     United States District Court for the Western District of Arkansas (Rickey Dale Newman, v. Larry Norris, 05-2107)

On October 22, 2009, Judge Dawson reversed the decision of the Arkansas Supreme Court in which refused to grant consent to Attorney Julie Brain to be lead counsel for Rickey Dale Newman

Newman was convicted in 2002 and sentenced to death for murdering a woman at a transient camp.

Brain who was with the Arkansas Public Defender's Office left for a similar position in Delaware, and argued to remain as Newman's counsel as she argued to the judge that she has built a trusted relationship with Newman.[2]

See also

External links


Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Hugh Waters
Western District of Arkansas
Seat #2
Succeeded by:
Paul K. Holmes

ArkansasArkansas Supreme CourtArkansas Court of AppealsArkansas Circuit CourtsArkansas District CourtsArkansas City CourtsUnited States District Court for the Eastern District of ArkansasUnited States District Court for the Western District of ArkansasUnited States bankruptcy court, Eastern and Western Districts of ArkansasUnited States Court of Appeals for the Eighth CircuitArkansas countiesArkansas judicial newsArkansas judicial electionsJudicial selection in ArkansasArkansasTemplate.jpg