“Time for a tree and a rope,” he posted on Monday to the San Antonio Police Department’s Facebook page, according to the Austin American-Statesman.
Burnet County Judge James Oakley took responsibility for the rash words on Wednesday. He apologized and called his language “unfortunate,” but denied that it contained any racial undertones.
“I never made that connection but I do see how somebody could make that connection and be offended towards that. That was not my intent,” he told The Huffington Post on the phone. “Maybe I watched too many Westerns when I was little.”
The article he posted contained news of an arrest made in Sunday’s shooting death of San Antonio Police Detective Benjamin Marconi. Otis Tyrone McKane, who is black, was arrested on suspicion of murdering Marconi one day after the detective, who was white, was fatally shot inside his patrol car.
Trump’s America: A Texas Judge Just Called For The Lynching Of A Black Suspect – “To be clear, I advocate due process. I also support the death penalty in cases where the ultimate crime has been committed and there is clear and complete evidence and where all steps of the judicial process have been respected. I would also point out that I am an administrative judge, and do not preside over criminal court” said Oakley in his cursory apology for casually discarding one of the founding principles of the American justice system.
This is the atmosphere that Donald Trump is cultivating – naked racism goosesteps in public while the protections of the law are discarded on a whim. Judge James Oakley needs to be impeached, since he clearly cannot be trusted to uphold the law or give an unbiased opinion in court.
‘Time For a Tree and a Rope’: Texas Judge Calls for Lynching Black Suspect After Sharing Mugshot on Facebook – Oakley presides over a five-member commissioner’s court in Burnet County, is on the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization’s executive committee and on the board for the Pedernales Electric Cooperative.
The top comment under the post slammed Oakley’s language as disgusting.
“What Mr. Oakley suggested was racist,” a blog post about the post read. “A sitting County Judge in Texas has suggested that a black man accused of a crime … should be lynched. … There is no place on the PEC board of directors for an open racist. This is not political correctness. It is racism in its rawest form.”
A Sitting Texas Judge Called for the Hanging of A Black Suspect – Atlanta Black Star – Not only is Oakley a sitting county judge, but he serves on the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization’s executive committee and the board for the Pedernales Electric Cooperative, as well, the Austin Statesman reports. Landaker also previously served on the PEC board.
Oakley hasn’t issued a statement or apology of any sort since making the racist remark. There’s no word of whether he’ll be reprimanded either.
“If he does not apologize, he should resign,” Landaker wrote. “He should resign both of his positions – as county judge, and his seat on the Board of PEC. He is not fit to serve.”
“If he does not resign from PEC, other directors should impeach him.,” he continued. “They should call a special meeting of the board and address the matter forthwith.”
As for McKane, the accused cop-killer has since apologized for his actions, saying he “lashed out” at the officer due to personal issues in his life.
“I’ve been through several custody battles, and I was upset at the situation I was in, and I lashed out at someone who didn’t deserve it,” McKane said as he was carted off by police to Bexar County Jail on Monday.
Burnet County judge apologizes for ‘time for a tree and a rope’ commen – The post is no longer on Oakley’s Facebook page, but a screenshot shows that the comment was posted from his personal account. Oakley appears to have made the comment Monday, after Otis Tyrone McKane was arrested. McKane is charged with killing Marconi. The detective was shot as he sat in his vehicle Sunday after making a traffic stop.
In addition to presiding over a five-member commissioner’s court in Burnet County, Oakley is also on the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization’s executive committee, the board for the Pedernales Electric Cooperative and the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement’s board.
Oakley said his comment was “off the cuff” and “indeed curt and harsh.”
“It is for that reason that I deleted it soon after posting and apologize for not being more thoughtful and comprehensive in my expression,” Oakley said in an email. “What I should have posted, if anything, is a comment that more clearly reflects my opinion on the cowardly crime of the senseless murder of a law enforcement officer.”
His view of McKane “is the same regardless of ethnicity,” Oakley said.