Judicial Q&A: Kim McTorry

(Note: As I have done in past elections, I am running a series of Q&As for judicial candidates in contested Democratic primaries. This is intended to help introduce the candidates and their experiences to those who plan to vote in March. I am running these responses in the order that I receive them from the candidates. Much more information about Democratic primary candidates, including links to the interviews and judicial Q&As, can be found on Erik Manning’s spreadsheet.

Kim McTorry

1. Who are you and what are you running for?

I’m Kim McTorry and I am a Judicial Candidate for the 208th Criminal District Court. I am a Houston trial attorney dedicated to fighting for the rights of others. I am the managing attorney at McTorry Law, PLLC where I lend a majority of my practice to representing the underprivileged and the disenfranchised. As a criminal defense attorney, I am tasked with protecting the Constitutional rights of the accused. I formerly served as a prosecutor at the Harris County District Attorney’s Office. I accepted this position because I recognized the need for diversity within the criminal justice system. If elected, I am hopeful about making a positive change towards fair treatment of both victims and the accused. I have handled thousands of felony and misdemeanor cases. Outside of the courtroom I enjoy spending time with my husband and 3 children. We are proud baseball and dance parents.

2. What kind of cases does this court hear?

The 208th Criminal District court hears felony cases.

3. Why are you running for this particular bench?

I am running for the 208th , because I recognize that courtroom inefficiency and the inability to view cases from the lens of both sides hurts us all. I would bring a fair and balanced perspective to the 208th while ensuring that both victims of crimes as well as those accused of crimes are given equal priority within the bounds of the law.

4. What are your qualifications for this job?

My entire career has been spent practicing criminal law in Harris County courts: first as a prosecutor and currently as a criminal defense attorney. Having practiced on both sides, I have gained a wider perspective of the problems that exists and the possible solutions that need to take place to change them. Practically speaking I have handled thousands of criminal cases ranging from low-level misdemeanors to first degree felonies. I have conducted numerous jury trials, pre-trial hearings, pre-sentencing hearings, and other court proceedings.

5. Why is this race important?

Fairness and efficiency on the bench ensure that our community is safe and that our constitutional rights are safe guarded. This race is especially important, because having the right judge on the bench greatly impacts the functionality of our criminal justice system works. We have a lot of work today to fix some of the flaws within our system, and we need someone on the bench that is ready and eager to put in the work. That ‘someone’ is me.

6. Why should people vote for you in March?

Having practiced on both sides of the bench, I would bring a fair and balanced perspective to the bench. Both my professional experience as well as my personal experiences make me the best suited for this position. I am a first-generation college student that worked 2 jobs to pay my way through college. I come from extreme poverty and was even homeless for a brief period as a child. I’ve dedicated my life to being a voice for the voiceless because I know what it’s like not to have one. I have handled thousands of felony cases, run my own practice, and am a wife and mother of 3 children. I’m no stranger to hard work. I am eager and prepared to work to clear the current backlog of cases in a fair but efficient manner.

My experiences both professionally and personally have afforded me a relentless work ethic, compassion, and the ability to think outside the box. I look forward to putting these qualities into action by creating a more efficient case management system and working to find long lasting solutions for the people of Harris County that will address recidivism and public safety.

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