The Honorable Kerry Wells

San Diego County Superior Court, Department retired


The Hon. Kerry Wells (Ret.) served as a judge for the Superior Court of San Diego County in California. She was appointed to the bench by former governor Gray Davis in December 2002, filling a vacancy created by the retirement of the Hon. William Draper (deceased). She retired from the bench in 2018.

Wells earned a B.S. from the University of Arizona. She then received a J.D. from Whittier School of Law.

She began her legal career working as a deputy city attorney in the Office of the City Attorney of San Diego in 1980. Then, in 1982, she moved to the Office of the District Attorney of San Diego County, where she worked as a deputy district attorney until her appointment to the bench. During her twenty-year tenure there, Wells became an expert in domestic violence and stalking prosecutions. She was the first to serve as Chief of the Domestic Violence Unit as well as the Stalking Unit, and she founded the Stalking Strike Force, a multi-agency task force that targets stalkers before they become violent.

Wells is, perhaps, best known for her successful prosecution of Betty Broderick for the murder of Daniel Broderick and Linda Kolkenna Broderick. This was one of the first court cases to be covered on live television, and it would eventually inspire two television movies and several books.

During her free time, Wells enjoys writing music, playing piano, and spending time with her grandchildren.

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