This week, a tape surfaced of a Texas judge whipping his daugter and verbally berating her for 7 1/2 minutes. Hillary Adams released the tape, which was taken in 2004 when she was 16 years old, showcases the abuse she endured for years at the hands of her father, Judge William Adams.
Hillary, who suffers from ataxic cerebral palsy, was caught illegally downloading music by her father on the family’s computer. This was apparently the impetus for this particular beating, but physical assault was a common occurrence in the Adam’s household. Hillary had set up a hidden video camera to catch the next beating—which she sadly knew would come—on tape.
I will not be embedding the video in to this post. About 20 seconds of accidental viewing (a news clip shared some of the video) left me in tears. It is truly one of the most disturbing, upsetting acts of pure evil I have ever witnessed.
For his part, Judge Adams is not denying that he is the man in the video. When asked, he said:
That’s me. I lost my temper. Her mother was there, she wasn’t hurt … it was a long time ago … I really don’t want to get into this right now because as you can see my life’s been made very difficult over this child. In my mind I have not done anything wrong other than discipline my child when she was caught stealing. I did lose my temper, I’ve apologized. It looks worse than it is.
And this is where I really start to come undone. This man is a judge. He is purportedly a man of justice and reason and he thinks saying a child has made his life “difficult” is justification for a savage beating. As far as the abuse not being as bad as it looks, any abuse is downright awful from where I am sitting. Having seen a sliver of the tape, I cannot even begin to imagine the mental gymnastics it entails and level of denial this man must be in to think this was nothing short of savage.
Did I mention he is a family judge? Yeah. THAT.
The video has understandably shocked and outraged Aransas County, where Adams was just elected to a four-year term last year. Adams has been temporarily relieved of his duties as an investigation gets underway. Facebook pages and YouTube videos have spring up, in English and Spanish, urging citizens not to re-elect Judge Adams. One can hope he loses his job before he is up for re-election in three years. That this man could sit on the bench after such evidence of abuse has emerged makes me ill.
As far as Hillary’s mother, Hallie, goes, she admits that she also played a minor role (if abuse can really be minor) in the abuse but that she was also a victim of Judge Adam’s. She claims that she was trapped in a marriage filled with abuse and control. Reports imply that she beat Hillary because she had no other choice and she was being held captive by a tyrant. Hillary has since forgiven her mother.
Unfortunately, late yesterday Adams questioned the motives of his daughter, claiming the video was posted after he threatened to stop financially supporting his daughter. This poor excuse for a father also said he thinks his daughter is using her illness as a ploy to gain media sympathy. The whole situation is such a sad, tragic mess…and nothing erases the abuse this woman had to endure.
Hillary believes her father has been punished enough by the video being made public. I, on the other hand, would like to see the book thrown at him. Local officials in Texas are conducting due diligence on the case, including trying to figure out if the statue of limitations has passed. I can only hope this young woman sees justice and her father faces punishment for such evil brutality.