My last few blog posts have been about the police reportedly citing 10 under age drinkers with drinking alcohol at the home of a municipal court judge in the county where I practice law, Cobb County, Georgia. Cobb County is in northern metro Atlanta, and is a county of more than 600,000 residents. It is starting to appear that each and every one of them has heard about this story.
This news story has struck a nerve, and the comments online at the Marietta Daily Journal website are off the charts. The MDJ has been the primary paper following the story, although the Atlanta Journal Constitution has followed it as well. There have been at least three articles in the MDJ, and there have been at least 400 online comments, most of them very harsh on the adults who were reported to have been involved in one way or another, according the the newspaper article.
It seems the nerve that has particularly been struck relates to where the under age drinking citations were issued – in the home of a judge. I’ve tried about 80 civil jury trials over the years. I think judges are very smart in a niche area — being a judge. Parenting skills are not considered. So I’m not as interested in whether or not a judge-parent was involved. I’m more interested in stressing the point that "cool" parents who allow their children and their friends to drink in the "safety" of the parent’s home are playing with fire. Fire that is civil and criminal legal liability, and fire that is life and death.
More to come, for sure.