The Reality of Recusal and Due Process

The Due Process clauses of the United States Constitution requires (sic) judges to recuse themselves from cases in two situations:

  1. Where the judge has a financial interest in the case’s outcome.
  2. Where there is otherwise a strong possibility that the judge’s decision will be biased.

In either case, it does not matter whether or not the judge is actually biased. What matters is that even if the judge is not biased, the high probability of bias still damages the integrity of the judicial system.”

Let’s take a look at how the above concept actually played out from July, 2017 to November, 2017 in the 325th court of Tarrant County.

According to the filings in Cause No 2017-GD00236-2, it was asserted that sometime prior to July 25, 2017 Terri White withdrew $30,000 from her mother’s Texas Trust Credit Union account and used that money to pay the Donna Smiedt law firm to file an Application for Appointment of Temporary and Permanent Guardian of the Estate.

Here is my interpretation of what happened:

Terri White wanted to take her incapacitated mother’s estate so she used $30,000 of her incapacitated mother’s money to pay Donna Smiedt to do just that.

Fast forward to November, 2017 and Terri White was removed from the bench.

During this time, Terri White was the associate judge of the 325th who rendered decisions on cases in which Donna Smiedt appeared before her as the attorney for one of the litigants.

“2.  Where there is otherwise a strong possibility that the judge’s decision will be biased.”

The 325th is considered a Family Court.  Donna Smiedt is board certified in Family Law.

Do you really want people like this involved in life-altering decisions impacting your children?

Did you read the part that Terri’s mother is incapacitated?

What is the level of greed and hate these two stooped to in filing the Application?  Quite frankly I don’t think the emotion of hate had anything to do with it.  I personally believe these people are so devoid of any emotion that it is simply second nature for to them to destroy families.

Even their own.

Or that of an associate.

I don’t know the value of Terri’s mother’s estate, but it must have been large enough for Terri to want it.  Donna Smiedt was her ticket to get it.

“2.  Where there is otherwise a strong possibility that the judge’s decision will be biased.”

Now do you understand why many people call it the Anti-Family Court?

One more thing… what were the long-term consequences of Terri White and Donna Smiedt failing to honor the spirit of Due Process?  Absolutely nothing.  In fact, Terri White now provides mediation services in divorce and modification cases as a “retired” associate judge.


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