In August, Alabama federal judge Mark Fuller was recorded on 911 audio while he beat and abused his wife, Kelli, in an Atlanta hotel room while she begged dispatchers for help, reported CBS News.
Despite proof of the vicious attack, this abusive man is still employed as a federal judge.
The incident gained national attention in the wake of the now-infamous Ray Rice video that showed the suspended running back’s actual attack on his now-wife Janay Rice. Like in Rice’s instance, people are now calling for Fuller’s removal from the bench. However, there stands an awful chance that Fuller’s record may get cleared.
“People want another scalp,” said Barry Ragsdale, Fuller’s attorney and friend. “They want to be able to claim the scalp of a federal judge as somehow making up for the fact that the NFL has not kept its house clean.”
People don’t want “another scalp.” People want justice for women in our society who are beaten and mistreated. The fact that Fuller is still technically employed is perhaps the most disgusting part about the handling of this case, and his record may be cleared to boot. From the sounds of the audio, this incident sounds a lot more violent than the Ray Rice incident. According to Kelli Fuller’s police report, her husband “threw her to the ground and kicked her” and “hit her in the mouth several times.”
We have a federal judge charged with domestic violence because he kicked his wife and repeatedly hit her in the mouth. It’s fair to say that the options presented to Judge Fuller aren’t what your average Joe would get. If Fuller completes 24 weeks of counseling, his charges get dropped. If he weren’t a judge, he wouldn’t he been granted such leniency.
Also, Fuller’s “professional fate” is up to the appeals court in Atlanta. One of three things can happen to Fuller: court-issued reprimand, request his retirement, or recommend banishment from the bench forevermore.
This is not enough. A man in Fuller’s position should be held fully accountable for his actions because of his position. He’s supposed to exemplify justice and the rule of law, but his treatment illustrates the opposite. Men in suits pay to play, all others just pay.