Home Judicial Performance Evaluations 1996 Full List Judge Markson

Second Judicial District - District Judge

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Honorable Paul A. Markson Jr.

Retention year: 1996
Recommendation: Retain

The Judicial Performance Commission of the Second Judicial District recommends that Judge Markson BE RETAINED.

Judge Markson graduated with a degree in English from St. John’s University in Minnesota in 1965 and obtained his law degree from the University of Colorado in 1968. After serving with the Army in Vietnam, Judge Markson spent one year as a law clerk to Colorado Supreme Court Justice Robert Lee, practiced private trial law for two and a half years, and then became a deputy district attorney in the Denver district attorney’s office from April 1973 to January 1981, when he was appointed to the Denver district court bench.

In the past 15 years Judge Markson has been assigned to the criminal, domestic relations and civil divisions of the district court. In his last Judicial Performance review in 1990, Judge Markson received criticism concerning lack of courtesy and patience. In the 1996 survey of attorneys, 89.3% agreed that Judge Markson is courteous in his work, an improvement consistent with one of the goals the judge set in 1990.

Judge Markson is married and has 12 children, 10 of whom are adopted.

In August 1994, Judge Markson was arrested in Glendale, Colorado and charged with driving under the influence of alcoholic beverages. In December 1994 he pleaded guilty as charged and  he received probation, a fine, and he completed court-ordered community service and alcohol education classes. The Commission has reviewed all available official court records concerning the violation and Judge Markson’s actions in response to it.  The Arapahoe County Probation Department completed a standard alcohol evaluation, and concluded that Judge Markson does not have an alcohol problem. Judge Markson has no other alcohol-related charges or convictions. The Commission views a DUI conviction of a judge as a serious matter. However, when viewed in the light of Judge Markson’s overall exemplary record as a district judge, the mitigating circumstances of the violation, and the judge’s candor, remorse and assurances that his violation was an unusual event that will not occur again, the Commission concludes that it was an isolated occurrence that has not affected his performance as a judge and should not affect his retention as a judge. The Commission is satisfied that he handled it appropriately, it will not occur again, and that it is a closed chapter.

Judge Markson is highly rated in survey results that indicate that he finds facts without public influence, treats all parties equally, displays appropriate knowledge of the law and evidence, and that he works hard, displays compassion and does very well in all other areas of judicial work. More than 96% of the attorneys surveyed recommended retention.   

Written survey results showed that 96.7% of attorneys, 80% of courthouse personnel, and 87.5% of jurors favored retention; 4.4% of courthouse personnel favored non-retention; and 3.3% of attorneys, 15.6% of courthouse personnel and 12.5% of jurors had no opinion.