Riverside County Superior Court, Department B303 (website)
Clerk phone: +1 (951) 572-5395
Dept. 31: +1 (951) 777-3730
The Hon. Mark E. Johnson is a judge for the Riverside County Superior Court in California. He was appointed to the bench in 2009 by former governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.
He is a registered Democrat.
Judge Johnson received his B.A. from Northeast Louisiana University in 1981. He went on to earn his J.D. from Pepperdine University School of Law in 1984.
After law school, Johnson enlisted in the United States Army in 1985. His seven years of active duty included being stationed in Germany with the 1st Armored Division, serving in the Judge Advocate General Corps, and two years stationed in Korea. After his active duty, he would remain in reserve service. During his 28 years in the military, Johnson would hold several positions including command judge advocate, company commander, battalion commander, and division chief of operations. He would be called back into active duty in 2003, where he would be stationed in Baghdad. During his year-long deployment there, Johnson served as the Chief of the Government Support Team with the 1st Cavalry Division and was instrumental in helping to draft the Iraqi Constitution. Johnson retired from the U.S. Army Reserves in 2013 having reached the rank of Colonel.
His civilian career includes practicing criminal law as an associate at Bawden, Tyler, and Johnson and at the William K. Gamble Law Firm. He entered into solo practice in 1993 and remained in that capacity until 1999.
He would then leave the private sector to become a deputy public defender for the Riverside County Public Defender's Office in 2000. During his tenure with the P.D.'s office, Johnson helped litigate murder, child molestation, and sexual abuse cases. At the time of his appointment to the Superior Court, Johnson was serving as a senior deputy public defender in Riverside County.
While on the bench, Judge Johnson has presided over criminal trials at the Banning Justice Center. He has also presided over the Veterans Court, which he helped develop in 2011, and which convenes at the Riverside Hall of Justice. The Veterans Court supervises veterans on probation that suffer from military trauma such as PTSD and traumatic brain injury.
His judicial committees have included the Riverside County Superior Court Criminal Law Advisory Committee and the Riverside County Veterans Advisory Committee.
He has been a member of the board of directors for the Inland Empire Champions for Collaborative Courts and the U.S. Vets, March Air Force Base.
His commendations include receiving the Bronze Star medal in 2004, the Legion of Merit, the Meritorious Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal, the Korean Defense Star Medal, the Combat Action Badge, and the Parachutist's Badge.
Away from the bench, Judge Johnson enjoys hiking and browsing antique shops.
J.D. from Pepperdine University School of Law (1984)
B.A. from Northeast Louisiana University (1981)
Senior Deputy Public Defender at Riverside County Public Defender's Office in Riverside County, California (until 2009)
Deputy Public Defender at Riverside County Public Defender's Office in Riverside County, California (from 2000)
Sole Practitioner at Private Practice (1993 to 1999)
Associate at William K. Gamble Law Firm in Santa Barbara County, California (1992 to 1993)
Associate at Bawden, Tyler, and Johnson (1990 to 1992)