Judge Hamrick Plans Retirement
Superior Court Judge Ben W. Hamrick, 67, who presided over the first murder conviction in San Diego without a corpse, is retiring Oct. 1.
His last day in court, due to vacation plans, will be Friday.
During his 18 years on the bench, Judge Hamrick presided over such memorable cases as the first Sagon Penn murder trial, and the People vs. Hyde, in which a conviction was obtained, although the body of the deceased was not found.
Hamrick’s departure creates a second vacancy on the bench, following Judge Paul Overton’s retirement earlier this year. There is no word on when the positions will be filled by the governor.
Hamrick was a partner in the insurance-defense and personal-injury firm of Strop & Hamrick when he was appointed by then-Gov. Ronald Reagan in 1973.
The Indiana native came to San Diego in 1924 and attended San Diego State College.
In World War II, Hamrick flew 35 combat missions as a staff sergeant with the Army Air Corps, earning six medals.
Judge Hamrick, who has three grown children and lives with his wife in San Diego, will begin working in November with the Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Service, a private consultation service.