The Supreme Court ordered today, at the conclusion of this opinion, that "that James Michael Shull be removed immediately from the office of Judge of the Thirtieth Judicial District, pursuant to Article VI, § 10, of the Constitution of Virginia."
The opinion says: "Initially, we note that the record before us contains many letters from attorneys, court personnel, and local citizens, who have written in support of Judge Shull’s professional reputation and service to his community."
One of those letters was from me, and it said this:
"To Whom It May Concern:
Re: Judge Michael Shull
I have practiced law in Southwest Virginia since the Fall of 1990 and known Mickey Shull for some years. Mr. Shull is an engaging individual with a lively mind. He is smart and he is quick, and he is very empathetic. He has done a lot to help friends of mine from Scott County. He made an excellent living as a lawyer working out of a storefront office, with cases in every courtroom. When I learned that he was a candidate for the judgeship he now holds, I wrote to Senator Wampler to tell him that I supported Mr. Shull, and expressed the view that these qualities - his sharp intellect, desire to help people - would allow him to become an excellent juvenile judge.
Most of the time I have spent with Judge Shull (since he became a judge) has been talking about public affairs with him and other lawyers over lunch or at the courthouse. I have not appeared before him, but I have done my best to follow his career. What I have heard is that he does the Court's work with a high level of energy and that he does a good job discerning and applying the law.
I have no knowledge of the particulars of the complaint against Judge Shull that has been reported in the newspapers. It is my firm belief that Judge Shull is unbiased in his work and perfectly suited to dispense equal justice under the law, to persons of all kinds. His personality and manner of expression might not always make a good impression - sometimes he talks too loud and says too much. In spite of these quirks, I think he is a good man and so far as I can tell, a good judge also."
That's all I have to say about that.