I thought I would use this blog to provide some helpful information from other judges. Today, I start what I hope will be a regular series of questions with a judge. Today, my first victim – I mean – guest.
Circuit Judge David Strong
Lincoln, Pike & Walthall Counties
14th Circuit District
Judge Strong earned a B.A. from Millsaps College and a J.D. from the University of Mississippi. Judge Strong was elected unopposed in 2010 and 2014.
1. What do you like most and least about being a judge?
It is hard to say what I like most about my job. I suppose it is the friendships you develop with others in the profession. These are friendships you never would have made were you not a member of the judiciary. Ironically, what I like least is the isolation from the local bar.
2. Identify one judge, living or dead, whom you admire the most and explain why?
I admire Judge Charles Pickering. He presided over the first trial in which I participated. I was extremely nervous and he was very patient and understanding. He also scared the living hell out of me. I also have a tremendous amount of respect for former Chancellors Donald Patterson and R.B. Reeves. These gentlemen served in the districts in which I practiced and were extremely kind to a young lawyer who had little idea what he was doing.
3. What three suggestions would you give to a lawyer about how to improve their writing?
4. What three suggestions would you give to a lawyer about how to present an effective case in your court?
Brevity, clarity and candor are the three virtues which answer both of these questions. If you can say it in 4 words don’t use 8. If you have a valid argument don’t hide it by raising other issues which may be irrelevant or frivolous. I think you gain a certain amount of trust from the judiciary when you are honest about the strengths and weaknesses of your case or argument.
5. If you could change any law or rule, what would it be?
Conspiracy to commit a crime should never carry more time than the crime itself.
Thank you Judge Strong.