So Tuesday's post about the Court of Appeals ripping Republican Attorney General nominee Steve Simpson drew quite a bit of response, most of it about what that opinion says about Simpson's attitude towards women. In essence, Simpson's rulings prevented a jury from hearing that the deceased in a murder trial had been raping the defendant's 13 year-old daughter right before the killing and kept the jury from considering self-defense or defense of others. I'm not ready to make any sort of conclusion about Simpson's psychology, as I'm not a psychologist. But a commenter to that post asked about another incident out there that should be explored.
On Memorial Day weekend in 2010, Simpson, then Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety, drove to the Harrison County jail to help free a friend who had been jailed for beating up his wife. Though the judge in the case had ordered the man held for a cooling off period, Simpson managed to have him released on his own recognizance. “Hindsight is 20-20,” Simpson told the Sun Herald at the time. "I hope it never gets to the point that a public servant can’t make a personal judgment when friends call for help.” And what did the man who Simpson helped actually do? According to police reports, Gulfport police were called to the man's house after a party that Simpson also attended to find the man asleep in bed and his wife with a bruised left eye. The wife told police that her husband had too much to drink and they got in an argument at home; she said she was struck in the nose and fell and after she asked him not to hit her again, he struck her in the face two or three more times.
If you're keeping score at home, that's one instance of refusing an abused woman a defense to a murder charge, and another of skirting a judge's order to get an accused abuser out of jail.