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WFMY News 2 Finds Judge Who Refuses To Hear Criminal Cases In Alamance County

11:34 PM, Sep 9, 2013   |    comments
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Graham, NC -- For two weeks, WFMY News 2 has been trying to get answers from a judge who refuses to hear criminal cases in Alamance County.

According to the Burlington Times News, in August, Superior Judge Elaine Bushfan told a courtroom that Alamance County prosecutors are just throwing people in prison instead of trying to rehabilitate them. She said they're too harsh on criminals.

Since then, WFMY News 2 has not been able to reach Judge Bushfan for comment until Monday.

Read here: Judge Elaine Bushfan Doesn't Want to Hear Criminal Cases In Alamance County Because The DA Is Too "Harsh"

WFMY News 2's Liz Crawford finally caught up with her in Graham where she was hearing civil cases.

Crawford asked, " Do you still stand behind the things that you said a few weeks ago in court? Bushfan said, "The record speaks for itself. I have no comment."

WFMY News 2 had to wait outside the civil court building in order to talk to Bushfan. But before that, Liz Crawford sat in her courtroom. Bushfan called Crawford to her bench and told her that the record or transcript from that day in court accurately describes how she feels. She doesn't want to comment further because the five plea deals she reversed are pending.

Judge Bushfan reversed five plea deals including habitual felons and a sexual battery case.

Originally, she signed off on these but later in the week, she struck them down and said she's not coming back.

According to a transcript obtained by the Burlington Times-News, Bushfan said, "It says something about the harshness of a county if people can walk into a courtroom... having never gone to jail before, ready to make restitution and they walk out a convicted felon."

Read here: New Details: Judge Refuses to Hear Cases in Alamance County

Since Judge Bushfan refused to hear any more criminal cases in Alamance County, other judges have been assigned those criminal sessions.

The Alamance County district attorney's office said North Carolina law prohibits them from commenting on Judge Bushfan's allegations.

WFMY News 2, Burlington Times-News

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