Judge William Adams, the elected Aransas County, Texas official, has admitted to beating his daughter with a leather belt.
Adams told KRIS TV in Corpus Christi that he is the man in a YouTube video seen violently lashing his teenaged daughter in her bedroom. The video was filmed by a hidden camera in 2004 and uploaded onto the Internet last month.
It happened years ago.. I apologized, Adams told KRIS on Wednesday.
It's not as bad as it looks on tape, the judge added.
The Rockport Police Department opened an investigation into the video on Tuesday night and has elicited the help of the Texas Rangers and the Department of Public Safety. Judge Adams said the he personally contacted the Judicial Review in Austin, who will also open an investigation.
In the video, Judge Adams and his wife verbally abuse their daughter Hillary Adams for playing computer games and downloading music. Both order the girl to lie down on her bed and then the judge repeatedly whips the girl with his belt while shouting at her.
Judge Adams says to his daughter, I'm going to beat you into submission, and Get on your stomach like a grown woman! among other things.
Hillary Adams has also gone public about the video, which she personally uploaded onto YouTube, as well.
It had happened before, and had been escalating. I set up a camera, and I caught it, she told KRIS in a separate interview.
She said she put the video online after she had a vicious argument with her father over the phone.
My father's harassment was getting really bad, so I decided to finally publish the video that I had been sitting on for seven years, Adams said.
Hillary Adams said that the physical abuse went on for years and that she thought abuse at some level was normal.
In the description of the video, Hillary Adams also tells viewers to forgive her mother, who was emotionally abused herself and was severely manipulated into assisting the beating and should not be blamed for any content in this video.
The judge's wife has since left the marriage due to the abuse, which continues to this day, and has sincerely apologized and repented for her part and for allowing such a thing, long before this video was even revealed to exist, she wrote.
She also uses the video to attack her father's career, saying Judge William Adams is not fit to be anywhere near the law system if he can't even exercise fit judgement as a parent himself. Do not allow this man to ever be re-elected again. His 'judgement' is a giant farce. Signed, Hillary Adams, his daughter.
Facebook users have taken up Adams' cause, and a page called Don't Re-Elect Judge William Adams was created on Wednesday morning and had more than 4,000 members by the afternoon.