Precious Pam and I are reaching out to Kosciusko County with our sincere request that you vote for Karin McGrath for judge of Superior Court 3. Allow me to briefly share my vantage point for making this recommendation.
I have practiced law for 45 years, which has included serving in the United States Navy as a JAG, practicing in a litigation law firm in Wyoming, and maintaining my law practice in Warsaw continuously since moving here in 1981. I have tried serious criminal cases, including murder, rape, armed robbery, and the like, both as a prosecutor and as a defense counsel, and I have tried many civil cases, including complex civil litigation. I have a lot of jury trial experience.
I have argued cases before this United States Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals and the United States 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. It is from that perspective that I make my comments about the real trial experience and ultimately why Karin McGrath is not only the best candidate for judge, in our opinion, she is really the only correct choice for judge of Kosciusko Superior Court 3.
The question is not how long a person has practiced law but what was the nature of the experience gained during her or his career. By way of an analogy, a person may say he has been in school for 14 years, but if he has taken first grade over 14 times, that “experience” is not impressive and has not prepared him to perform at a higher-educated level.
It is in the area of serious trial experience that Karin McGrath leaves the other three candidates in the dust. Karin has tried case to juries. She has tried serious criminal cases and civil cases. She has first-hand experience in dealing with all of the procedural aspects and preliminary hearings that go into these types of serious cases. We do not want someone to become a judge who does not have experience trying serious cases to a jury.
I hasten to say that the other three candidates are good people. But none of those three is the best candidate. Lindsay Grossnickle was a life-long Democrat until she decided she wanted to run for judge in Republican Kosciusko County, so she made that switch. She is a Whitley County lawyer, not a Kosciusko County lawyer. Her criminal experience in the courtroom has been primarily doing child support cases for the prosecutor’s office in Whitley County, Robert Bishop is a good guy, but again his experience has been primarily limited to doing child support matters in the prosecutor’s office.
Chad Miner – we like Chad – Precious Pamela and I taught him in our second grade Sunday school class years ago. Unfortunately, Chad’s lack of substantial experience with serious trials indicates that he is not the best candidate either. Karin may not have a familiar last name like the other candidates, but the judges of Kosciusko County know Karin and respect her knowledge and abilities in the courtroom. As far as trial experience in genuinely serious cases, Karin’s experience is head and shoulders above the others.
Because our faith is very important to Precious Pam and me, I asked Karin directly to tell me about her experience of becoming a Christian. I was immediately impressed that she did not flinch or hesitate but answered me fully about how she became a Christian and how her faith is important to her and her family. I am also impressed with the life experience that Karin has under her belt, as an educator and as a mother. No person who has not raised teenagers can fully understand many aspects of that part of life. Karin has been a successful and effective mother and wife and we count that as a significant achievement and a high honor indeed.
I think it would be really good for Kosciusko County, and even for our current team of judges, for there to be a female judge serving here. Precious Pam and I have been happily married for over 50 years and I will say that my dear wife’s viewpoint, perspective, and wisdom as a lady has been invaluable to me and to our family, and her advice has protected me from making severe mistakes. Please vote for Karin McGrath because she is far and away the best candidate.
The icing on the cake is that Karin McGrath will be the first woman judge in the history of our great County. Thank you.
Paul (“Rafe”) and Pam Refior