San Antonio Express-News: "In this way, Esperanza Court is a model for how the criminal justice system should work. It treats root causes. Invests on the front end to change lives and then saves taxpayers on the back end. It recognizes people who are not risks to society. It’s a court that should be replicated at the misdemeanor level."
KENS5: "These women need to change their lives. They need to reclaim their lives in order to stop that revolving door of incarceration,” explained Judge Lorina Rummel of the 144th District Criminal Court.
San Antonio Express-News The Esparanza Court, presided over by Judge Rummel, "...focuses on individuals who have three or more convictions for prostitution by offering treatment and therapy for drug and alcohol abuse, trauma and mental health issues, county officials said. For those who participate, it’s a way to confide in and bond with others in the same situation, talk about their problems, learn job-seeking skills, and stay out of jail or prison."
KSAT12: On the Esparanza Court: “It is a huge commitment for these women to try to take control of their lives and try to change their lives,” Rummel explained.
SA Beacon: Lorina Rummel is the presiding judge of the 144th District Court - a criminal district court. The court handles felony criminal matters such as murder, sexual assault, aggravated robberies- serious felony crimes. Judge Rummel brings over 25 years of criminal trial experience to the bench, having served as both a prosecutor and defense attorney prior to becoming a judge. This extensive trial experience has helped bring timely and efficient justice to a Bexar County. Four years ago, the 144th D. Ct. was winning in all categories, the largest number of cases awaiting trial, the longest wait for trial, and the largest jail population. Judge Rummel, with the help of fantastic staff, excellent prosecutors and defense counsel, there has been a total turn around. The number of cases awaiting trial has been reduced by over 50%, it has one of the lowest jail populations and is consistently one of the quickest courts to trial.
In addition to running the criminal trial docket, Judge Rummel runs the specialty court of the Esperanza program. It is geared to felony prostitution and its purpose is to rehabilitate these offenders and stop the revolving door of their incarceration. She quickly learned that even though her participants are on felony probation as offenders, they are truly victims in their own right.The majority of her participants (at least 80%) are human trafficking victims. As a result of this, they have suffered serious trauma. To cope with the trauma, they turn to drugs. To pay for the drugs, they resort to prostitution. The court is a 2 to 2 1/2 year program and has had some remarkable success. There truly is hope for the hopeless. Please click the button below to learn more.
Influence SA Magazine: In July, Influence SA Magazine, which focuses on local leadership and business, wrote a Bio on Judge Rummel. Among numerous topics, the piece discussed Judge Rummel's accomplishments on the bench to-date. "Judge Rummel began with a docket of cases and came out winning in all categories in the district courts. Before she came on board, the courts had the largest number of cases awaiting trial, the longest wait in jail for a trial, and the largest jail population. In four years, with the help of an incredible staff and excellent prosecutors and defense counsel, a total turn-around has taken place. The number of cases awaiting trial has been reduced by over 50 percent, the court has one of the lowest jail populations, and it is consistently one of the quickest courts to bring cases to trial. Judge Rummel plans to continue serving the citizens of Bexar County by applying her exceptional experience and dedication to fairness to the 144th District Court Bench.
Shavano Living Magazine: In April, Shavano Living magazine ran a bio piece on Judge Rummel, quoting her passions as a presiding judge. "I need to make sure children’s cases receive priority and ensure victims’ issues are heard. I am proud to say that in the three and a half years I have been on the bench, my caseload has drastically reduced. That means that criminal issues have been heard and dealt with. Those that deserve severe justice have received it. Those that deserve a second chance to better their lives, with the court’s guidance, have been given that chance."
The Rivard Report: Judge Rummel on the first Esparanza Court graduation, “We’re asking these girls to completely change their lives.”