Judge Mark Mur­phy ap­pointed to Su­pe­rior Court seat

The Standard Journal - - LOCAL - By Kevin Myrick [email protected]­stan­dard­jour­nal.net

As Gov­er­nor Nathan Deal gets ready to leave of­fice, he had some last minute busi­ness to fin­ish up in­clud­ing the ap­point­ment of some­one to fill a seat on the Tal­lapoosa Cir­cuit Su­pe­rior Court.

It will be easy for ev­ery­one to con­tinue say­ing “Judge Mur­phy” for the time be­ing as Deal’s of­fice an­nounced on Fri­day that Mark Mur­phy, the cur­rent head of the ju­ve­nile court, is be­ing moved up to a new bench.

Mur­phy re­places the nowre­tired Judge Michael Mur­phy from Har­al­son County, who gave up the seat after two decades of ser­vice with his fi­nal day on Hal­loween.

He said he was ex­cited to get into his new po­si­tion on the bench.

“I am hum­bled and deeply hon­ored by the op­por­tu­nity that Gov­er­nor Nathan Deal has given me to serve our com­mu­nity on the Su­pe­rior Court bench. I’ve lived in the Tal­lapoosa Ju­di­cial Cir­cuit my en­tire life,” Mur­phy said. “I was born in Polk County, grew up in Har­al­son County and moved to Polk County a few years ago.”

He added that “As the Cir­cuit’s Ju­ve­nile Court judge for the past 21 years, I’ve been com­mit­ted to the wel­fare of our com­mu­nity for a long time. I am grate­ful for the op­por­tu­nity to con­tinue serv­ing our com­mu­nity in the Su­pe­rior Court. When peo­ple come to court, they are deal­ing with some of their most chal­leng­ing prob­lems.”

“My goal is to pro­vide them with a court­room ex­pe­ri­ence where they leave feel­ing that they’ve been treated fairly and that jus­tice has been done,” Mur­phy said.

One of the ar­eas that Mur­phy was hard at work on as the ap­point­ment comes was es­tab­lish­ing a Ju­ve­nile Court’s Fam­ily Treat­ment Ac­count­abil­ity Court to try and curb the in­crease in chil­dren en­ter­ing fos­ter care after par­ents be­come ad­dicted to al­co­hol or drugs.

He said he re­mains 100 per­cent com­mit­ted to mak­ing the court work.

“In my view this is one of the most valu­able Ju­ve­nile Court pro­grams we have had the op­por­tu­nity to pro­vide for hurt­ing fam­i­lies in our com­mu­nity. We are just now staffing our first group of par­ents to start their treat­ment pro­gram. We have a good treat­ment team who is fully trained.

He added that he and the team who makes up the Fam­ily Treat­ment Ac­count­abil­ity Court just fin­ished train­ing and “are ready to launch.”

“My plan is to work with our team as long as needed to get it up and run­ning. Un­til a new Ju­ve­nile Court judge is ap­pointed and feels ready to work with the treat­ment court, I will be there,” Mur­phy said. “The ac­count­abil­ity court pro­gram is one of Gov­er­nor Deal’s crim­i­nal jus­tice re­form pro­grams. These ac­count­abil­ity court pro­grams of­fer de­fen­dants suf­fer­ing from un­treated men­tal health and drug abuse prob­lems a real op­por­tu­nity for re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion and es­cape from a life of crime.”

Mur­phy comes to the Su­pe­rior Court with not only decades of ex­pe­ri­ence al­ready on the bench, but years of ed­u­ca­tion as well. He earned a bach­e­lor’s de­gree from Ge­or­gia Tech and a law de­gree from the Ge­or­gia State Univer­sity Col­lege of Law.

He lives in Cedar­town and has three chil­dren.

That marks a de­par­ture for the past sev­eral years on the Tal­lapoosa Cir­cuit, where Har­al­son judges have rep­re­sented both coun­ties on the bench.

/ Con­trib­uted

Polk/Har­al­son Ju­ve­nile court Judge Mark Mur­phy was oneof many who spoke at the Polk County Ro­tary Club.

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