Otter appoints state prosecutor to Idaho's 4th District Court

Gov. Butch Otter on Wednesday appointed Melissa Moody to a vacancy left by the retirement of 4th District Judge Michael McLaughlin.

Moody, of Boise, is lead deputy in the Attorney General's Special Prosecutions Unit and will take the bench on June 30.

The other nominees submitted to Otter by the Idaho Judicial Council were Ada County Deputy Prosecutor Jonathan Medema, Ada County Magistrate Michael Reardon and Jason Scott of Hawley Troxell in Boise.

Otter's news release follows:

Governor C. L. “Butch” Otter today appointed Melissa Moody of Boise, lead deputy in Attorney General Lawrence Wasden’s Special Prosecutions Unit, to fill a Fourth District Court vacancy left by the retirement of Judge Michael McLaughlin.

Moody, whose term on the bench begins June 30, is an Illinois native with degrees from the University of Illinois, Penn State University, and the Cornell University law school in central New York.

She was a law clerk for former Idaho Supreme Court Justice Gerald Schroeder, an Ada County deputy prosecutor, a deputy attorney general in the Criminal Appellate Division, a city prosecutor in Nampa, and a deputy attorney general in the Civil Litigation Division before becoming head of Special Prosecutions. Moody also worked for almost a year as a criminal law specialist for the American Bar Association in Tbilisi in the former Soviet republic of Georgia.

Among the cases she has handled was representing Attorney General Wasden in his lawsuit against the State Land Board – of which both Wasden and Governor Otter are members – over policies for leasing State endowment lands.

“Melissa’s depth and breadth of experience, along with her high intelligence and exemplary work ethic, make her a great choice for the bench,” Governor Otter said. “The Judicial Council sent me an outstanding slate of candidates, but Melissa stood out. She will be a fine judge and a credit to the Fourth Judicial District.”

“I am honored and privileged to be selected for this position,” Moody said. “I will do my best to serve the people of Idaho in my new role.”

Sounds like payback and conflict of interest.

From Otter's news release:

"Among the cases she has handled was representing Attorney General Wasden in his lawsuit against the State Land Board – of which both Wasden and Governor Otter are members – over policies for leasing State endowment lands."

Sounds like payback --huh?

She represented Wasden suing the Land Board. So how is making her a judge payback? Otter is on the Land Board. Wait a minute, given what they pay judges in Idaho these days, it probably is Otter's way of punishing her.

More of the same -

And once again, a prosecutor is appointed to the bench. Gee, which side gets more of a fair shake in pre-trial motions and at trial? Take a look at the magistrates and district court judges around the state. The vast majority are former prosecutors and former insurance defense lawyers. Few to none have ever done real criminal defense work and are willing to force the state to carry its burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt or rule favorably for a defendant on a motion to suppress or motion to exclude evidence wrongfully obtained. The "Justice" part is getting left out of the "Criminal Justice System" we have been taught to believe in, and as long as Idahoans keep electing the politicians they have, we will keep getting judges that only view it as the "criminal system" that gives the police and prosecution every break possible, at the expense of the Constitution, taxpayers and accused.


Who would you have appointed instead, of the actual applicants?

And do you have a problem with this particular appointee, or do you just think all police and prosecutors are evil, and all defense attorneys saints?

If you're going to do the tired cynical act, back it up with some relevant facts/opinions instead of the weak generalizations.

And of course, the last appointment was a career defense attorney, as is the case with quite a few others over the last few years - are you saying the governor should appoint ONLY defense attorneys?

Okay, that too was another disappointing bunch o'posts


You fry wants with that?