Raleigh, N.C. — Gov. Beverly Perdue on Tuesday named a Raleigh lawyer as a Wake County District Court judge, replacing a former judge who pleaded guilty to signing orders that altered sentences in dozens of impaired driving cases.
Louis B. Meyer III is a past president of the Tenth Judicial District Bar and the Wake County Bar Association. He has participated in the Wake County Volunteer Lawyers Program, performing pro bono representation of victims of domestic violence, and in various Wake County Bar Association public service projects.
“Louis has distinguished himself as an attorney,” Perdue said in a statement. “His strong intellect, wealth of experience as an attorney and love of the law will serve him well as a district court judge.”
Meyer received both his undergraduate and law degrees from Wake Forest University. His father served as an associate justice on the North Carolina Supreme Court for 14 years.
Kristin Ruth resigned from the bench in May, and she pleaded guilty Monday to a misdemeanor charge of failure to discharge her official duties.
Indictments returned last month by a Wake County grand jury allege that evidence of blood-alcohol levels of 0.15 or higher was wrongly suppressed in seven cases and that the convictions of 39 other drivers were back-dated, meaning that some might have been spared a license suspension or had a shortened time without a license.
Defense attorney James Crouch, the defense attorney of record in each case, was indicted on two counts of obstruction of justice and one count each of altering court records and criminal conspiracy. Elizabeth Michelle Daniel, a paralegal in Crouch's office, was indicted on one count each of obstruction of justice and criminal conspiracy.
Ruth said during her plea that she accepted responsibility for failing to scrutinize improper orders that were brought to her to sign.