Judicial Q&A: John Stephen Liles

(Note: I am running a series of Q&As for judicial candidates in contested Democratic primaries. There are a lot of judicial races on the ballot in Harris County this election, and so 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. I will also be conducting some in-person interviews of candidates who will be involved in contested primaries for non-judicial offices. Please see my 2010 Election page for a full list of Q&As and interviews.)

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

My name is John Stephen Liles. I was born and raised in Houston, am a fifth generation Texan and was educated in Houston’s public schools. I graduated from University of Texas, Austin and obtained a law degree from South Texas College of Law in 1981. Following law school, I started my own law practice dealing primarily in criminal law, later broadening my representation to juvenile delinquencies and Child Protective Services cases involving injured and abused children. I have over 28 years of trial experience and am a candidate for the position of judge of the 314th Juvenile District Court.

2. What kind of cases does this court hear?

The 314th Juvenile District Court deals with juveniles between the ages of 10 and 17 who have been charged with a criminal offense, including both misdemeanors and felonies. The court also hears cases involving abused or neglected children where the state has intervened through Child Protective Services.

3. Why are you running for this particular bench?

I am running for this bench because I believe I can make a positive difference in the lives of the children and families who appear in juvenile court. The juveniles of Harris County need someone who will bring fresh ideas and new programs and services for their rehabilitation. The children need someone who will not just plod along with what is easy or what has been accepted as adequate in the past. The children of Harris County deserve someone who will continually improve the system and think outside the box and strive to allow them to become contributing members of society.

4. What are your qualifications for this job?

My qualifications to become judge of the 314th Juvenile District Court are superior to anyone else running in this election. I have been a trial attorney in Texas for 28 years having had over 150 trials dealing in criminal, juvenile and Child Protective Services issues. Everyday for the last 28 years, I have fought for those up against a system that is not always fair for the children and families that are before it. I have dedicated my life to being the voice that speaks for what is right and fair, but more importantly, I have focused on what can be done to ensure that juveniles receive proper treatment and rehabilitation.

5. Why is this race important?

This race is the most important because how justice is applied in juvenile court not only affects a child for the rest of his/her life, but it also will affect how our society will evolve for the future. If we want to have a prosperous and harmonious life in Harris County, we must not allow our efforts to fail in rehabilitating a child for it is the child who is the future of country.

6. Why should people vote for you in the primary?

People should vote for me in the primary because I am not running as a politician or past appointed judge trying to continue the same old tired inefficient programs. I am running as an outsider who wants to make a positive difference in our society. If elected, I will be a judge who will continually strive to improve the rehabilitative, job training and mental therapy programs available to juveniles in order to ensure that no effort is overlooked in striving for the goal of molding juveniles into becoming productive members of society.

My basic judicial philosophy is that we can strive for the rehabilitation and treatment of a juvenile offender because if we don’t, society will pay for the incarceration of a man.

Related Posts:

This entry was posted in Election 2010 and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.