Friday, October 28, 2011, 10:09 AM
Posted by Administrator
Because people I know seem to have issues with their driver licenses, I have made two trips to the fabulous North County Courthouse (conveniently located across the street from the Palm Beach Mall---the #1 mall in the county) in the past few weeks. I didn't go as their lawyer (solve your own problems, I say---a little to easy for you to just have me do it) but merely to stand around and make sure their situations didn't go to crap. Things did not go as expected.

After standing in a long line in the hallway with a bailiff saying at frequent intervals "If you are not a defendant, you can't stand in the line, you have to go right now to the front of the courthouse." (Note: the bailiff is a very nice guy and I doubt it was his idea to kick the public out of a public courthouse), defendants gave a clerk their name and their file was pulled and sent into the "courtroom". I have put "courtroom" in quotes because courtrooms should have things like...well..a judge. But, this one didn't.

In front of the courtroom where the judge (or the Traffic Magistrate on traffic ticket days) would sit was a woman dressed in a brownish suit. The first time I was there, a handwritten sign in front of her identified her as an Assistant State Attorney. The second time, even the handwritten sign was gone. There was no doubt in my mind (or my friends' minds) that the entire audience of defendants (and the room was packed) waiting for their case to be called believed this woman to be the judge.

Finally, each defendant's case was called and they stood in line in front of the person-they-believed-to-be-the-judge seemed to me...the-person-they-believed-to-be-the-judge decided their fate.

To be continued.............
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