Monica Contreras went to court in August 2011 to finalize her divorce. With her daughter at her side, marshals ordered her into a private room for a drug search. Contreras came back into the courtroom and addressed the judge claiming that the marshal grabbed her buttocks, breasts, and ordered her to lift her shirt. The judge ignored Contreras’ pleas for help. Contreras requested a female officer search her and that request was also ignored. The officers arrested her claiming that she was making false allegations.
Judge Patricia Donninger did nothing to stop court marshal Ron Fox, nor did she attempt to aid Contreras. Instead, Donninger turned her back and played with Contreras’ 2-year-old daughter. Contreras filed a complaint against Clark County family court. However, there was little done to correct the matter. Internal affairs finally investigated the situation and after a six-month investigation, arrested Fox.
Channel 8 news in Las Vegas uncovered the video. The courtroom video clearly shows Judge Donninger ignoring Contreras as she begs for help and is then arrested. Is Donninger prejudiced toward women and above the law? Facebook group Safe Kids International, FamilyLawCourts.com and AboveTheLaw.com certainly believe so. They say Donninger shows a bias toward her court officers and refuses to reprimand any of her underlings for wrongdoing.
Donninger is not the first judge to make horrible choices while on the bench. The US Supreme Court has decided to review Judge Edith Jones for her misconduct in February. Many organizations and citizens are calling for Donninger to be removed from the bench. The Las Vegas Tribune says Donninger is "immature” and “should not be in a position of authority.”
This case has caused speculation as to what other things Donninger has covered up or allowed to go unnoticed in her courtroom as she causally turns her back on those she is presiding over. With enemies such as these in our courtrooms and bad cops such as Richard DeCoatsworth on our streets, it could result in vigilante justice.
There are enough criminals in the world; we do not need those in a position of authority to be our next enemies. Just because a person has the title of judge or a badge and gun, does not make them invincible to our justice system. Judges like Donninger need to be brought up on charges just like any other citizen.
It is unknown if Ron Fox has been charged with sexual assault. However, as internal affairs has been investigating they have found other court officers committing crimes as well. One court officer actually choked a person in the courtroom and there have been various other sexual assaults by marshals in Las Vegas’ family court. Only time will tell what other crimes internal affairs will uncover as their investigation continues.