Meet the woman behind the robe
By Victoria Hansenvhansen@abcnews4.com
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- Chances are you've seen her on the news. Her candid, cut-to-the-chase comments make for what we in television call good sound bites.
Linda Lombard is a magistrate judge for Charleston County. She hears all kinds of cases, from drunk driving to assault and battery. She hears it all.
"People give me the most ridiculous stories," Judge Lombard said. "'I was walking down the street judge, and I saw this gun and I picked it up.' I said did you take it to the police? 'No, ma'am.'"
Guns and drugs, she says, are the biggest problems. What's more, the drugs of choice are changing.
"Prescription drugs are becoming more of a problem than illicit drugs," Lombard said.
Medications for pain and anxiety are now being used recreationally.
"The big deal I see are forged prescriptions. People either work in a doctor's office and steal the pads or someone will come in and steal the doctor's prescription pads."
Judge Lombard has served the community where she was born and raised for more than 30 years. She's worked in the solicitor's office, as an attorney and as a Charleston County Council Chairwoman. In fact, she was the one who pleaded with people on television to evacuate in the face of Hurricane Hugo.
"I enjoy public service, and I was taught that you owe your community, which I strongly believe."
Judge Lombard takes her duties seriously. She once took a tour of a prison. She says she wanted to see where she was sending criminals. She got quite a surprise.
"Men were yelling, 'Mrs. Lombard, this is Harry. Ten years on grand larceny.' People were yelling, 'hello!' and that's really very interesting," Judge Lombard. said "Nobody was upset, which kind of amazed me."
She says while some people get upset and even curse at her, most understand she is just doing her job.
Is she ever afraid?
"No, well I got the contempt power. They don't," she said.
You better believe, she'll use it.