William Youkers was on parole in 2011 when he choked his pregnant girlfriend in Plano. He pleaded guilty, and the judge was lenient, placing him in a community supervision program. But three months later, he tested positive for meth. He assured Judge Scott Becker that he was turning his life around by taking community college classes and moving in with his mother. Becker wasn't convinced, though, and sentenced him to eight years in prison.
When his request for a new trial was denied, Youkers took his plea to the appeals court. There, he stepped onto ground that hasn't yet been tread in Texas courts: the judge's Facebook status.
Youkers discovered at some point after his trial that Becker was Facebook friends with the father of his pregnant girlfriend and had been throughout the trial. What's more, the father had sent Becker a Facebook message intended to sway the judge's decision in the case. At the very least, Youkers argues, this raises big questions about the judge's impartiality.More »