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District Judge, 185th Judicial District

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    Maritza Antu (Rep) Attorney

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    Stacey W. Bond (Rep) Former Judge / Attorney

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Biographical Information

What criteria will you use when making the final decision about assigning attorneys to represent indigent defendants? Please discuss selecting attorneys from the Public Defender’s Office vs. the selection of private attorneys.

What will you do to ensure that the commissioners that you appoint to oversee the grand jury selection for your court will use a process that is unbiased and ensures that grand jury members reflect the diversity of our community?

A large percentage of the inmates in the Harris County jail are pre-trial detainees. Other large metropolitan areas in Texas are increasingly using no-cost personal bonds for defendants who are accused of non-violent crimes but pose little flight risk; thereby, enabling them to be released prior to trial. Do you support using personal bonds and the services of the Harris County Pretrial Services Department for non-violent defendants as they await trial? Why or why not?

Education/Degrees University of Texas at Austin - B.S., Public Relations 2002. University of Houston Law Center - J.D., 2005.
Professional Experience The Antu Law Firm, PLLC - 12/31/16 - Present. Harris County District Attorney's Office - 9/6/05 - 12/30/16.
Community Involvement Volunteered in Republican Campaigns.
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Campaign Phone (832) 930-2373
I will appoint attorneys that are experienced, hard working, good advocates for their clients and will go above and beyond the call of duty.
Fortunately, the law in selecting grand jurors in the State of Texas was recently reformed. Currently, the law requires that district court judges select grand jurors from a jury pool comprised of citizens in the community who reflect the composition of Harris County.
Yes, under certain circumstances and on a case-by-case basis.
Education/Degrees Texas A&M University BBA 1989 University of Houston Law JD 1993
Professional Experience Former District Court Judge - 4 yrs Extensive trial experience as both a prosecutor (Harris County) and as a private attorney. Board certified in criminal law for 17 yrs; lawyer for 25 yrs. I have tried 120 jury trials and presided over 100 trials.
Community Involvement Judge of STAR (Success Through Addiction Recovery) Drug Court for 3 1/2 years. Pro bono legal services to the indigent; National Charity League; Church involvement includes Sunday School teacher for adults, youth and children, Board of Trustees, VBS.
Campaign Email
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Campaign Phone (713) 854-2405
Once a defendant has been determined to be indigent and requests counsel it is incumbent upon the judge to appoint him/her counsel. In Harris County there is a process in place where the court requests a list of available, qualified attorneys. The Public Defenders Office (PDO) may or may not appear on the random list generated by the Fair Defense Act Wheel. My practice when I was formerly appointing lawyers was to choose lawyers I knew to be diligent, conscientious, and competent. I tried to use a mixture of private attorneys and PDO. If the client was not a native English speaker, I would try to the extent possible to appoint lawyers who could speak the client’s native language. If the client had special circumstances such as a mental health diagnosis, was a veteran, or had lengthy history of addiction I would attempt to appoint attorneys who had special expertise in those particular areas.
Commissioners are no longer used to select Grand Juries. The process now requires that Grand Juries be selected from a regularly called jury panel. Once properly qualified by the court, jurors are selected to serve for three month terms. This new selection process ensures that the panel is more diverse and includes citizens from all areas of the county. One potential drawback for the citizens chosen to sit on a grand jury is that the service is compulsory (required) and some individuals find it difficult to serve two days a week for a three month period if they work regular business hours. That being said, I have never had a Grand Juror who was sorry that they served. Most enjoy the opportunity and the experience very much.
I support the use of personal bonds and Pre Trial Services for non violent offenders who are indigent. Pre Trial Services provides very valuable information and insight into the likelihood of a defendant returning to court as required. Additionally, the use of Pre Trial Services affords a level of supervision for certain defendants and helps the court monitor compliance with any bond conditions. Defendants who are on bond are in a better position to aid in their defense, they are able to make decisions about entering into plea bargains based on guilt and not on a desire to be released, and if inclined they may seek treatment in the private sector they would not have access to if incarcerated.