Unhappy With Court

RECEIVED Thu., Dec. 11, 2003

I want to relay my experience at Austin Municipal Court. I was the complainant in a case on Dec. 8. I was in the courtroom of Judge Celia Castro. My first problem is that the city prosecutor did not speak to me one single time about my case. I was the victim in this case and was not spoken to by the city prosecutor's office until after the trial was over. Is this any way to represent the interests of the injured party? Both myself and the defense team wanted a court recorder present in the courtroom. The court spent 10-15 minutes looking for a court recorder. They never were able to find one. The trial proceeded without a recorder. Is this any way for a court to be run? Austin citizens deserve better treatment and service in their courts of law. The city prosecutor then invoked a rule that required me, the victim, to be outside the courtroom. I was not allowed to hear any of the testimony of the case. I was not even present when the judge rendered her decision!
   Is this fair? Was the city prosecutor really protecting my interests? It might be worth noting that two of the defense witnesses were Austin police officers. All of the witnesses in this case were standing outside of the courtroom chatting. The bailiff approached me and told me to sit down and not to talk. The bailiff said nothing to the two Austin police officer witnesses who were also there. This concerns me because it gives the appearance of the court being somewhat less than impartial.
Robert McEnulty
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