Since opening the doors to Kelly & Soto Law, time spent in district courtrooms around MA has become regular for me. By way of illustration, in the last two weeks, I have spent time in Brighton District Court, South Boston District Court, Roxbury District Court, Malden District Court, Charlestown District Court, Somerville District Court, Woburn Superior Court, and most recently, Woburn District Court.
A court appearance is often considered a bit of an inconvenience for members of my profession. Long waits, administrative difficulty, and demanding clients could very well contribute to this ideal. My experience, however, has been different. In fact, I tend to enjoy them. And when someone asked me recently why that was, I couldn’t help but think my more pleasant experience has been a result of the caliber of judges employed by the Commonwealth.
As mentioned previously, I was most recently in Woburn District Court. I appeared in front of Judge Marianne Hinkle. This experience was as pain-free as it could have been. Judge Hinkle moved through her docket quickly, but carefully. She was compassionate, yet enforced the law.
I recently came across an article highlighting the excellent work done by many of the Justices of the MA District, and in particular, Judge Hinkle. Some of their duties and obligations are perhaps things that one wouldn’t expect of someone in the elevated position of judge.
For example, Justice Hinkle, and all MA judges, as a matter of fact, are on-call for after hour’s emergencies periodically throughout the year. When on-call, judges handle calls at night and on weekends. While most of the calls involve requests for emergency restraining orders or search warrants, sometimes judges are asked to do things like issue orders in medical emergencies or to commit someone to a psychiatric ward.
Most judges will handle approximately 30 calls per week when they are on-call. These calls often disrupt sleep, family time, and dinners. When asked about the program, Hinkle said, “[i]t’s a responsibility that is just part of our job.”
With this in mind, here’s to a big thank you from me to the Justices of the District and Superior Courts around Massachusetts. Not only have they made my experience smooth and enjoyable, but they are also dedicated public servants whose day-in and day-out contribution makes an impact that should be recognized.
Click HERE for the article praising a job well done by MA judges.
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