Judge Lloyd Jeffrey Wiatt 1943-2005
Sad to read about his death. He had a connection to showbiz, his brother Jim Wiatt is the CEO of The William Morris Agency, the leading and oldest of them all.
He was a former deputy D.A., he fought in Vietnam for four years, he had his pilot license, owned a plane, played guitar and golf. A well rounded person one might say.
He was respected by his peers, although attorneys appearing before him did not rate him highly on the list of judges who get to be peremptoraly challenged; over a period of time he rated well over 50, deemed to be an average indicator of feelings from attorneys that he is unfair, not wanted. He was controversial too, in his handling of certain of his cases.
But what brings me to this note is the news that he shot himself as he was about to be questioned in connection with a charge of child molestation.
Why? Was he guilty? Or was he afraid only of the process of investigation?
His family needs to know, and so do we. But will we?
The matter should be put to rest, but not yet. Too often, it’s “let sleeping dogs lie, nothing to be gained here”.
But the behavior of judges, the commonly accepted (because we have no choice) Gods of this society, all of whom cross every religious and non-religious boundary, must be seen to be held to the highest of high standards.
No cover-up. We need an answer just because he was a judge.