A Texas judge is under police investigation after a video, purportedly showing him beating his teenage daughter with a belt, was released on the Internet.
“Aransas County is aware of the video posted on YouTube regarding County Court-at-Law Judge William Adams, and the matter is now under review by the Police Department,” read a statement posted on the county website.
County attorney Richard Bianchi confirmed to the San Antonio Express-News that the individual in the video is Judge Adams. The child was reportedly being punished for using the Internet without permission.
“Obviously it is a very disturbing video,” he told the newspaper. “We in my office as well as everyone on Earth is taking a look at it at this time.”
Judge Adams expressed remorse to KXTV – and said his conduct in the video was “not as bad as it looks on tape.”
“It happened years ago,” he told the Texas television station. “I apologized.
The video was believed to have been shot in 2004 – but was posted Tuesday on YouTube – by someone identifying themselves as Adams’ disabled daughter. The graphic video shows the child being whipped with a belt as the man curses.
“It’s disturbing,” County Judge C.H. Mills, Jr. told Fox News.
Mills said he’s talked to his colleague and said “he’s pretty upset.”
“I’m not at liberty to tell you what our conversation was about because the county attorney told me I shouldn’t,” Mills said.
The Texas Dept. of Public Safety confirmed to Fox News that they’ve been asked to assist the Rockford Police Dept. as they investigate the video.
But at this point it’s unclear what – if any crime has been committed – and whether or not there’s a statute of limitations.
The video has caused turmoil in this tiny community about 30 miles north of Corpus Christi.
“It’s very hard to take care of business today because every phone is ringing with the same question,” Mills said.
For the time being Judge Adams has not been removed from the bench.
However, he agreed with the county attorney to have a visiting judge for the immediate future, Judge Mills said.