Tuesday, January 14, 2014

WA - Former judge (John P. Junke Sr.) plans to represent himself in child porn case

Judge Gavel
Original Article


By Terry McConn

WALLA WALLA - Although no longer licensed to practice law in this state, a former attorney who was a local District Court Judge in the 1990s will represent himself in the child pornography case against him.

John P. Junke Sr., 70, appeared Monday afternoon in Superior Court, where Judge Scott Wolfram heard of Junke’s decision, formally informed him of the charges, read him his constitutional rights and established standard conditions of his continued release.

As is usual with cases such as this, Junke will not be jailed pending resolution of the charges unless he violates any of the conditions.

They include requirements he continue living at his present address, not leave the county and not violate any criminal laws.

Junke will enter a plea later at his arraignment, but that has yet to be scheduled because a visiting judge needs to be appointed to preside.

At the end of Monday’s brief hearing, Wolfram recused himself from further involvement because he and Junke were in the same class at law school, moved to Walla Walla the same year, and used to socialize and attend the same church.

If Junke pleads not guilty at his arraignment, a trial will be set to begin within 90 days.

Accused of possessing Internet child pornography on personal computer devices late last summer, Junke was charged Dec. 26 with two counts of first-degree and four counts of second-degree possession of depictions of a minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct.

The child pornography allegedly was discovered after Junke took his computer tower to an area shop for repair on Sept. 9.

A technician notified officials, Walla Walla police obtained a search warrant for Junke’s residence Sept. 13 and, with Junke’s cooperation, also located a laptop computer and an external storage hard drive.

Later examination of the confiscated devices revealed 35 images of child pornography, including two that each depict a preteen girl having sexual relations with a male, according to officials.

Junke reportedly admitted to police he knowingly possessed the images, explaining his long battle with viewing pornography had spiraled out of control.

Junke faces a standard-range prison term of about 6½ to 8½ years if convicted as charged. But were a judge to opt for a sentencing alternative, Junke could be ordered to serve up to a year in the County Jail and successfully complete sex-offender treatment.

He now is undergoing counseling relating to the alleged offenses, officials said.

An ordained minister as well as an attorney, Junke came to Walla Walla to join a law firm in 1979. He served as the elected Walla Walla County District Court judge from 1991 through 1994 when he was defeated for re-election. He then started a private practice.

In 2006, he voluntarily resigned from the Washington State Bar Association in lieu of disbarment after having an unethical, yearlong romantic relationship with a woman client starting in March 2004.

Junke had been director of ticket sales and service for the Walla Walla Sweets baseball team until he was fired from that job because of the child-pornography investigation.

He also was a substitute motor route delivery contractor for the Union-Bulletin for three days in December before the newspaper cut ties with him upon learning that criminal charges had been filed.


Mark said...

"He now is undergoing counseling relating to the alleged offenses, officials said." Here is the classic move by a defendant advised more than likely by his lawyer to get "treatment." The judge has no defense to this charge since he admitted such, so his defense lawyer is helping him with one. When the judge gets into court, the defense lawyer will wave papers in the court's face and argue he is getting treatment for his problem, in the hope that the defense lawyer and the district attorney will "make a deal" if the judge pleads out. John P. Junke Sr. Here come the judge!

Mark said...

Okay, I am a cynic. Mr. Morris picture kind of says it all I am afraid. And I hope his defense lawyer will help "prep" him up a bit with some hair Moose and a tie and suit. Believe it or not that really works well in court because in court, your "image" is about 75% of the game.

Sex Offender Issues said...

What does his picture have to do about it? Many mug shots are horrible due to the police hanking you out of bed and won't let you comb your hair, get dressed, etc. So this is pretty much the typical mug shot if you ask me, but I agree, your image does account for how you are treated.

NJ45143112 said...

Part of his defense, undoubtedly, will be that he needed help but didn't know how to ask...
His porn addiction was out of control and took him with it...
He is a model citizen that has served the community, etc, etc...
You filthy boy, here is a slap on the wrist for your behavior now go and sin no more!
A tale of woe told by an idiot...
I think I remember telling much the same story once upon a time. Was it true? Sure...
Did the court care? Not really...
At least not the prosecutor who has the mark of the beast on him...
But that's another story...