Shashy to Run for Appeals Court - - Columbia, South Carolina |

Shashy to Run for Appeals Court

Montgomery County Circuit Judge William Shashy, who has presided over Alabama's long-running jail crowding case, announced Wednesday he will run for the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals.

Shashy, 53, said he will run as a Republican for one of two open seats on the court, but he hasn't decided which one. He expects to decide within 10 days.

No matter which position he chooses, he will have a contested race in the Republican primary on June 6 because GOP candidates have already announced for both seats.

Mobile attorney Terry Moore is running for the seat being vacated by Judge John Crawley, while District Court Judges Terri Willingham of Cullman County and Phillip Wood of Autauga County are seeking their party's nomination for the seat being vacated by Judge Glenn Murdock.

Gov. Fob James appointed Shashy to a circuit judgeship in 1996. Shashy had served as an attorney on James' staff in 1982, during his first term as governor. Shashy was elected to a full six-year term in 1998 and re-elected in 2004.

As a circuit judge in the capital city, Shashy has handled many prominent cases. Throughout his tenure, he has presided over the long-running litigation over state inmates backing up in overcrowded county jails because of a lack of space in state prisons. He is currently considering whether to hold the state prison commissioner in contempt for allowing the backlog to continue.

In another recent case, Shashy ruled that offering the state driver's license exam in a dozen languages is not a violation of the state constitution, which states English is the official language of Alabama.

Before becoming a circuit judge, Shashy was in private practice in Montgomery.

"I feel that my 15 years experience as an attorney and 10 years as a circuit judge have prepared me for the appeals court," Shashy said Wednesday.

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