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Judge Terrence Boyle

Nominee to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

Nomination Returned December 11, 2006


The Honorable Elizabeth Dole, United States Senator, Washington, D.C.

"Those of us who know Judge Boyle appreciate his intellect, even-handedness and record of distinguished service on the district court. A former North Carolina Democratic Party chair said, ‘I think he would happily rule against me and happily rule for me whether I’m a Republican or Democrat. I think he makes his decisions on the facts, and that’s the best we could ever hope.’

I believe Judge Boyle deserves to be confirmed to the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals. Most importantly, however, he deserves an up or down vote." (April 28, 2005)

Ernest L. Conner, Jr., Attorney at Dixon, Doub, Conner & Foster, PLLC, Greenville, NC

"I write as a life-long Democrat who, as an attorney, has appeared before The Honorable Terrence Boyle and the Fourth Circuit. I appeared before Judge Boyle in a post-conviction capital case and in a trial for violation of National Parks’ regulations.

In all cases I have appeared before Judge Boyle, I have found him to be the finest of judges and a person of the highest caliber. As a criminal defense attorney, I have discussed Judge Boyle with other defense attorneys. We defense attorneys find Judge Boyle to be prepared, to encourage the parties to be prepared, and most importantly to be fair to all parties.

Judge Boyle is one of the most intelligent jurists I have ever known. He is also one of the hardest working and most dedicated jurists I know. I personally have never heard any attorney who appeared before him to say anything negative whatsoever. His reputation is beyond reproach." (April 21, 2005)

Debra Carroll Graves, Criminal Defense Attorney, Raleigh, NC

"I am writing to express my unequivocal support for the nomination of United States District Judge Terrence W. Boyle to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. During the past six years, I have appeared before Judge Boyle on countless occasions on behalf of indigent criminal defendants in the Eastern District of North Carolina. The vast majority of my clients are of African American descent, as am I. I can say without hesitation that Judge Boyle has shown no inclination whatsoever to judge my clients according to their racial or ethnic background. Simply stated, from my observations and experience before Judge Boyle, race is not an issue.

My clients overwhelmingly plead guilty in federal court. Consequently, my initial goal as a defense attorney at sentencing, is to have the judge see my client, notwithstanding his criminal conduct, as a person. In that regard, there is no effort to be made when appearing before Judge Boyle. Judge Boyle often engages those being sentenced in a dialog to better assess their sense of remorse, level of contrition and general honesty. In these colloquies, Judge Boyle demonstrates a level of diligence and compassion that is unsurpassed in this district. The Fourth Circuit’s gain, truly, will be our loss." (February 28, 2005)

Gale M. Adams, Assistant Federal Public Defender, Fayetteville, NC

"Judge Boyle is ideally suited for the position based on his uncompromising integrity, his keen intellect and his unwavering commitment to justice for all who appear before him.

I am an African American attorney who has appeared before Judge Boyle numerous times for the past thirteen years in my capacity as an Assistant Federal Public Defender. I have never, at any time, felt that I was treated any differently because of my race, nor have I ever felt that Judge Boyle treated my clients any differently because of the color of their skin. Clearly, his perspective is shaped by the client’s record, by the facts of the case and by his assessment of the client’s potential for rehabilitation.

I have studied Judge Boyle’s approach to many cases and have come to deeply admire and respect him, mainly because of his treatment of defendants who appear before him. Unlike other judges, Judge Boyle spends time conversing with the client in an obvious effort to appropriately fashion a sentence for the case that is before him. . . . . I can also tell that Judge Boyle takes seriously the power that he has as a judge. He struggles to make sure that he properly uses his discretion to effect an appropriate sentence. His lofty goal is to ensure that the punishment fits the crime. One can tell after appearing before him that his approach to the case and to the defendant is tempered and fair." (March 1, 2005)

William A. Webb, Former Assistant United States Attorney and Federal Public Defender, Raleigh, NC

"I have recently become aware of certain criticism of Judge Terrence Boyle in the context of his nomination to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit which calls into question his impartiality in dealing with African American litigants and lawyers. I write to respond to that criticism. I have known Judge Boyle for eighteen years and practiced before him for approximately ten years, first as an Assistant United States Attorney and later as the Federal Public Defender for this district. During those years I have also had an opportunity to observe how he treated other African American lawyers and litigants. Judge Boyle enjoys a well earned reputation for the even handed and impartial manner in which he treats the lawyers and litigants who appear before him regardless of their race. To say that Judge Boyle takes race into consideration in making decisions is false; to say that he gives any impression of harboring racial animus is baseless. On the contrary, those African American lawyers who have practiced before him, like myself, will attest to his fairness both to them and their clients.

I commend Judge Boyle to you without reservation for elevation to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit." (February 25, 2005)

James B. Craven III, Attorney, Durham, NC

"By way of introduction, I am an unreconstructed New Deal, Fair Deal, New Frontier, Great Society, bleeding heart, tax and spend liberal Democrat who voted for Bill Clinton twice, to say nothing of George McGovern and Michael Dukakis. At age 10, I wrote President Eisenhower, asking him to spare the Rosenbergs. I am also 60 years old and a life member of the American Law Institute. . . . I think it is outrageous that having first been nominated, I believe 12 years ago, Terry Boyle has yet to have a confirmation hearing. Over the years I have appeared before him dozens of times, in civil and criminal cases alike. He is exceptionally bright, exceptionally compassionate, and exceptionally hard working and productive. What else counts?" (June 9, 2003)

R. Daniel Boyce, Attorney at Boyce & Isley, PLLC, and Former Assistant United States Attorney, Raleigh, NC

"I am writing this letter because I only recently learned that a number of national organizations are attempted to portray Judge Boyle as someone he is not. I find it offensive that national organizations, represented by individuals who have never even practiced before Judge Boyle, are attempting to portray Judge Boyle as biased or unqualified in any manner. To the contrary, Judge Boyle has served this District with honor and integrity. As a federal prosecutor, Judge Boyle held me to the highest standards. He insisted that I present my case with a full and complete knowledge of both the facts and the law. He would not accept anything less from any Government attorney. For defense attorneys, his expectations were equally high. However, at no time during over 20 years that I have practiced before Judge Boyle have I ever seen him act unfairly toward an attorney or a defendant. In fact, many of my colleagues have repeatedly expressed how fair Judge Boyle has been to defendants regardless of a defendant’s race, color, or gender.

Judge Boyle has been neutral in every single criminal case that I have handled, whether it be on the prosecution side or the defense side. . . . He attempts to uphold the law and apply the law to the facts of each particular case. At the same time, he has shown compassion where it is deserved." (February 28, 2005)

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