A suspended family law judge whose daughter posted a video online of him hitting her with a belt is asking the Texas Supreme Court to reinstate him.
In a motion filed Wednesday seeking reinstatement, Aransas County Court-At-Law Judge William Adams waived his right to contest a misconduct warning he received in September. The warning was issued after the state's Commission on Judicial Conduct held a hearing on Adams' capability to serve as a family court judge.
Adams, 52, was suspended with pay on Nov. 22, 2011 after his daughter, Hillary Adams, 24, uploaded to YouTube a seven-and-a-half minute video clip that she had recorded seven years prior.
The video, which has amassed more than 7 million views since it was first uploaded, shows William Adams beating his young daughter with a belt. According to a description of the clip, the girl has ataxic cerebral palsy and was being punished for "using the Internet to acquire music and games that were unavailable for legal purchase" at the time.
"Bend over the f--king bed, dammit," Adams said as he repeatedly hit his daughter with a belt. "Lay down or I'll spank your f--king face. ... I have to f--king beat you into submission. You want to put some more computer games on? You want some more? F--king computer... See all the problems they cause?"
WARNING: GRAPHIC VIDEO (Article Continues Below)
The video triggered enormous outrage from viewers, who left more than 160,000 comments on it, and received worldwide media attention.
After Adams uploaded the video in 2011, she spoke with KRIS-TV. She said she was 16 years old when it was filmed.
"It had happened before and had been escalating," Adams told the news station. "I set up a camera, and I caught it ... My father's harassment was getting really bad, so I decided to finally publish the video that I had been sitting on for seven years."
A phone listing for her father is disconnected. In a letter distributed by his attorney after the video was released, Adams claimed his daughter posted the video because he had threatened to withdraw financial support.
The Rockport Police Department investigated the video, but child abuse charges could not be filed because the statute of limitations had passed.
READ JUDGE WILLIAM ADAMS' PUBLIC WARNING (Story Continues Below)
According to CNN, Adams' ex-wife, Hallie Adams, sent a letter to the Supreme Court on Tuesday asking that the justices not lift her former husband’s suspension until after they investigate a complaint she filed against him in August.
"I have not been able to get anyone to protect me and now I am trying to protect the public from being judged by a person that I feel does not have the capacity to act fairly and effectively as a judge as evidence of how he has treated his own family over the years," she said, according to CNN.
Since William Adams has waived his right to appeal his misconduct warning, he is now eligible to have his suspension lifted. His elected term does not end until 2014. It is not immediately clear when the court will rule on the matter. Officials at the Aransas County Court were unavailable for comment Friday.
Need help? In the U.S., call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) for the National Domestic Violence Hotline.