A judge in the international kidnapping case making headlines for nearly a decade has finally acknowledged that the mother at the center of the Texas divorce may have had a good case.
So then why did former 308th District Court Judge James Lombardino find that there was “no credible evidence” that Houston based Dr. Christopher Brann abused his ex-wife, Marcelle Guimaraes, or committed family violence?
During his interview with Dolcefino Consulting, Judge Lombardino stated that “she may have had a good case, but she wouldn’t come and plead her case.” But Marcelle Guimaraes did plead her case. She plead her case before she ever fled for Brazil with her son Nico. Medical records documenting the abuse were reviewed by Lombardino, along with pictures of walls that were broken and cracked in a fight, as well as an affidavit from Marcelle Guimaraes herself, detailing the abuse that she was subjected to at the hands of Brann.
Judge Lombardino even issued a temporary restraining order in December of 2012, requiring Brann to stay 200 feet away from Marcelle and their child, Nico. But just four days later, Brann hired infamous Houston divorce lawyer, Bobby Newman. It was at this point that Marcelle says everything changed.
“Once Bobby Newman was hired, everything changed. There was nothing that I could do to convince the judge to accept, even to look at everything that I had to give to him. Things would just become more difficult for me,” says Guimaraes.
“It was about life saving really. There was no protection anymore. There was no justice anymore,” says Guimaraes about her decision to flee to Brazil with her son. On the same day that Newman became Dr. Brann’s lawyer, Judge Lombardino issued a ruling allowing Dr. Brann to see his son and removing the protections of the temporary restraining order.
In 2016, Judge Lombardino ruled that there was “no credible evidence” that Brann abused Marcelle Guimaraes or committed family violence. In 2020, Lombardino says that Marcelle Guimaraes “may have had a good case.” Which is it, Judge?
Judge Lombardino was ousted in the 2018 judicial elections but is now seeking to sit on a higher bench: The First Court of Appeals of Texas. Judge Lombardino faces a run-off with Houston area attorney Terry Adams. Early voting has already begun, and the election is on July 14, 2020. Over the years, when Harris County lawyers have been asked about Lombardino’s bias and impartiality, he has consistently received low ratings. If Judge Lombardino can’t protect a victim of domestic violence and won’t talk publicly about the broken family court system or his ethical problems, then why would voters reward him with a higher court?