EPA Nut-Kicking Braggadocio Doesn't Save Judge in High-Profile Fracking Case From Republican Primary Opponent

Categories: Legal Battles

trey_limbaugh1000-1-thumb-560x313.jpg
...on his primary loss?
Voters up in Parker County must not have thought much of district Judge Trey Loftin's campaign mailers bragging about how his "decision regarding deceptive actions by environmental extremists made the EPA reevaluate its national policy."

That's pretty grandiose, and it sounded like he was referring to the case of Steve Lipsky, the Parker County guy who can literally light his well water on fire. He hired an environmental consultant named Alisa Rich, who has, coincidentally I am sure, been characterized as an extremist by Fort Worth-based Range Resources, the company fracking wells beneath Lipsky's home.

Surely Loftin couldn't be referring to a case pending in his own court, right? I mean, the image above asks cryptically why Rush Limbaugh was congratulating him on his recent court orders. There's no way Loftin could be touting his rulings against Lipsky -- who is now being sued by Range for defamation in his very court, and on Loftin's say-so -- as conservative victories in a war against Obama's radicalized EPA. After all, that would hardly seem unbiased, coming from a judge.

He's still insisting to the local paper that these statements have nothing whatsoever to do with any pending case before him. "I do believe in the integrity of the judicial system," he told the Weatherford Democrat.

So, that's it. End of discussion. Loftin didn't mean it like that.

Wait, there's more? "The EPA, using falsified evidence provided by a liberal activist environmental consultant, accused and fined a local gas driller of contaminating wells. Obama's EPA backed down only after Judge Trey Loftin ruled that the evidence was 'deceptive.'" Oh, wow. That's so...specific. No room for interpretation there.

Loftin might have thought that in an oil-and-gas town like Weatherford, the electorate would cheer a judge willing to stick up for the industry that butters the bread. But nay, he lost his GOP primary Wednesday night by about 500 votes to a local attorney named Craig Towson.

Al Stewart, Lipsky's attorney, needn't have spent all that time writing a motion for Loftin's recusal. The voters of Parker County did it for him.


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10 comments
billpay47
billpay47

Anybody want to revisit this now that the EPA's IG report has come out exposing Alisa Rich's deceit and the complete inaccuracy of the EPA's testing process - Oh, and what about Al Armendariz's resignation?


Great reporting job guys - thank heavens there's no bias in the media... 

billpay47
billpay47

Anybody want to revisit this now that the EPA's IG report has come out exposing Alisa Rich's deceit and the complete inaccuracy of the EPA's testing process - Oh, and what about Al Armendariz's resignation?


Great reporting job guys - thank heavens there's no bias in the media... 

Chuck Bayne
Chuck Bayne

Judge Loftin was never voted into office by the citizens of Parker County.  Governor Perry appointed him for his short tenure in office. Prior to be appointed judge, Loftin was a prosecutor in Tarrant County.  Trey Loftin is an example of why prosecutors do not always make great judges. Tons of our tax dollars are spent to train prosecutors to look mean, convincingly say to a jury a man or woman is a criminal, and to aggressively prosecute people. But as we train these prosecutors they learn that in order to raise their salary each year they must keep a high prosecution conviction rate. Our current system does not train prosecutors to operate under the spirit of our judicial system. We train them to find ways to use the judicial system and the unlimited resources of our tax money to send people to prison and retain a high conviction rate.  After his appointment, Judge Loftin never acted so much as a judge as he did a prosecutor in a judge’s robe.Our current system works. I believe there is not a better system in the world. But our current system gives the state a great advantage over any average citizen in a criminal case. Everyone agrees we need to put criminals in prison.   But the system has its flaws and we train prosecutors to take full advantage of these flaws.  Many innocent people have been sent to prison for twenty or thirty years only to be released when it was found out an aggressive prosecutor failed to make known exculpable evidence that might have shown their innocence. This is usually done by a prosecutor trying to keep their win loss ratio in tact.  Today DNA evidence has freed many an innocent person from Texas Prisons. I am always amazed that even after a person’s innocence has been proven the prosecutor will almost always say he or she has no regret about sending an innocent person to prison. These same prosecutors have often gone on to become judges. After all, that is their career path.Judge Loftin ran for the office of Judicial District Judge in Parker County campaigning on what a fine job he had done as prosecutor in Tarrant County. When a Parker County citizen filed an open records request with the Tarrant County Prosecutors office asking about his work record, Judge Loftin filed a request with the Attorney General’s office to block any release of information about his work as a prosecutor. If his work product was as good as he claimed on the campaign trail, he had nothing to hide by allowing the citizens to see his employee file. Instead Judge Loftin complained that the citizen asking for the information had a hideous looking wife, had openly campaigned against him and should go to prison for even asking about his work history.  (I found this hard to believe but I wrote the Texas Attorney General’s Office and obtained a copy of Trey Loftin’s letter.)  Loftin’s refusal to open his records for public review leaves the appearance that he may have left his employment under circumstances less than perfect. Did Trey Loftin send an innocent person to prison in Tarrant County? Did he commit some other atrocity? Who knows, but his refusal to open his file for the citizens’ inspection only left rumors to abound.Judge Loftin campaigned that he and his spouse had prayed and given the judgeship position an enormous amount of thought. Trey Loftin told the voters he had made a great financial sacrifice to serve the citizens of Parker County. But when asked to show his income tax records to support his claims of sacrifice he refused.  Why did you do that Trey?  If you spoke the truth then your income tax records would have only boosted your trustworthiness with the voters. This would have been far better than leaving more rumors abounding about your honesty. And Trey if you had wanted to serve the people of Parker County for years, why did you apply for and obtain a Kansas law license soon after leaving the prosecutor’s office? That makes people wonder if you did not really want to serve the citizens of Kansas and not us in Parker County. Trey refused to address the issue. The person I want to thank is Rush Limbaugh. He provided the bullet that Trey Loftin finally used to shoot himself in the foot. After reading his unsolicited campaign literature I felt more empathy for my fellow Parker County citizen’s, Mr. and Mrs.  Lipskey, than I felt like voting for Trey Loftin.  I am sure that Mr. and Mrs. Lipskey know which defendant in their suit made a major monetary contribution to Trey Loftin’s campaign after his decision was issued.  It is public record. You have to ask, was justice for sale in Parker County?Trey Loftin’s behavior towards people who tried to represent themselves in his court was atrocious. He would make speeches from the bench about how you have to go to law school and pass the State Bar Exam before you can come past the railing (bar) in his courtroom.  If you check the record you will find it difficult to find even one pro se case that was successful. Even a simple adult adoption filed pro se by two elderly people wanting to adopt a youthful but adult loved one was denied. Trey Loftin told them they needed to come back with an attorney. It is all on the record.  Adult adoptions were not meant to be complicated matters. In Louisiana adult adoption is a simple notarial act that costs $30.00.But I also want to thank our loved County Sherriff Larry Fowler. Can you believe Trey Loftin put out campaign literature claiming our Sheriff had endorsed him?  When Trey was asked a simple yes or no question on the matter his answer heed and hawed. Did the Sheriff endorse Trey or not.  The answer is simply “NO”. Trey Loftin leaves behind a long line of Parker County Citizens who lost total faith in him. He caused over 50% of Parker County voters to say, “Hit the Road Trey, and don’t you come back no more, no more, no more, no more, hit the road Trey and don’t you come back no more…”  Chuck Bayne

Gangy
Gangy

People across the political spectrum agree that they don't want their water and air poisoned.  Some people may think fossil fuels are still cool, but that's only as long as it doesn't take their water and air or cause explosions nearby or take their land for pipelines.

MushMouth1
MushMouth1

All of that raping the environment ha-ha stuff that spills out of Rush's mouth pretty much goes up in smoke when your drinking water does too.

The Credible Hulk
The Credible Hulk

No kidding.

All Stewarts time could be far better spent penning a followup to "Year Of The Cat".

DAVID MCFATRIDGE
DAVID MCFATRIDGE

This is why states CAN NOT be relied upon to regulate fracking for gas. The Oil & Gas industry have unprecedented influence on the political system in Texas.

hopeforpeacenow
hopeforpeacenow

@billpay47

In reality, by recommending the EPA revisit the case- they found the fraud charge to BE a fraud, and the IG report states:

"Based on an isotopic analysis, Region 6 concluded that gas in the groundwater and gas from the production well were nearly identical and likely originated from the same source. Region 6, therefore, concluded that a gas production well owned by Range Resources caused or contributed to the contamination in the groundwater. Region 6 provided its test results to officials at the RRC, telling the state that the evidence demonstrated an ISE."

http://www.epa.gov/oig/reports/2014/20131220-14-P-0044.pdf

You must get your bad info from Energy In Depth, the astroturf Industry paid for lie machine.

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