Clayton Aarons was recently appointed Judge to the District Court of Prince George’s County, Md.
“Our youth need a lot of social interaction in terms of outside figures coming in, such as a One Hundred Black Men mentorship so they will have role models,” said Clayton Anthony Aarons, recently appointed Judge to the District Court of Prince George’s County, Md.
“As many judges have done, I will focus on diversion type programs,” he told the AFRO Aug. 30.
According to Aarons, youth criminality is caused by idle time and many have nothing to do when they come home from school.
“Such programs will direct them into positive atmospheres and will let them know that there is hope and a future for them,” said Aarons who noted that the Boys and Girls Clubs of America is a good resource for young people in the area.
“I hope to be able to expose young people to positive role models and steer them in the right direction,” said Aarons who looks forward to effecting positive change in local youth. “What I have seen is when people get into serious trouble, it is due to the lack of education, we need to catch them while they are in school and make sure they stay there.”
When asked why he was appointed to the Court, Aarons responded, “because of my reputation for treating people fairly.”
Aarons, who is African American, stated that he has always looked up to Thurgood Marshall, the first African-American justice on the Supreme Court.
“One of the things that inspired me to become a lawyer was Thurgood Marshall,” explained Aarons, “One of the reasons I went to Howard Law was because Thurgood went there,” continued Aarons who elaborated by saying that similar to Marshall, he plans to treat people fairly so that they receive equal justice under the law.
When asked if Black men receive harsher sentences than their White counterparts, Aarons responded, “I have not seen that.”
Aarons stated that he has not seen inequalities when it comes to race in his career, but he is aware of its existence.
According to recent statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau, Prince George’s County is over sixty-five percent Black.
“In Prince George’s County, there are chances and opportunities given to everyone regardless of race,” Aarons said.
According to the Rev. Dr. Ronald E. Braxton, Aarons’ former pastor at Metropolitan AME Church in Washington, D.C., “He is dedicated to the uplift of community, especially, the African-American community.”
Aarons extensive career in the legal field includes being a captain in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps; assistant public defender in Prince George’s County and assistant state’s attorney in the county. Most recently, Aarons has maintained a solo practice in Largo, Md., representing both civil and criminal cases.
He earned a law degree from Howard University School of Law with an undergraduate degree from the State University of New York at New Paltz.
Gov. O’Malley made two more appointments to the District Court for Prince George’s County; Brian Charles Denton, who has had an extensive career as a public defender, as well as Ann Louise Wagner-Stewart who has served in the States Attorney’s office for Prince George’s County.