In a ruling issued today, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals gave a good example of why we need courts of appeals.
Judge Brooks Jackson was chastised by the Court of Appeals for failing to follow the law when it came to the Federal Sentencing Guidelines. Judge Jackson was previously a state court judge in Jefferson County, Colorado. He became a federal judge two years ago. In this particular case, the Guidelines mandated a sentence reduction because the defendant plead guilty and saved the government resources by not forcing them to prepare for trial. The law was and is clear. However, Judge Jackson substituted his own views and he was soundly rebuked by the appeals court.
Judge Jackson has always been somewhat of a loose cannon. My experiences with him are identical to the 10th Circuit’s take that he rules bases on his personal beliefs and not the law. This is a good example of why we need courts of appeals. More on this case can be found at http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_24215917/appeals-court-blasts-federal-judge-denver-ignoring-ignore