Hon. Garen J. Horst See Rating Details
Superior Court
Placer County
See Comments

Attorney Average Rating:   1.5 - 1 rating(s)
Non-Attorney Average Rating:   1.0 - 2 rating(s)
Please send me alerts on this judge
E-mail Address:

Add your own rating

E-Mail Address (will not be displayed)
Confirm E-mail Address      

Only items marked with (*) are averaged into the displayed overall rating.

General Rating Criteria

* Temperament (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
* Scholarship (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
* Industriousness (1=Not at all industrious,10=Highly industrious)
* Ability to Handle Complex Litigation (1=Awful,10=Excellent)
* Punctuality (1=Chronically Late,10=Always on Time)
* General Ability to Handle Pre-Trial Matters (1=Not all Able, 10=Extremely Able)
* General Ability as a Trial Judge (1=Not all Able, 10=Extremely Able)
Flexibility In Scheduling (1=Completely Inflexible,10=Very Flexible)

Criminal Rating Criteria (if applicable)

* Evenhandedness in Criminal Litigation (1=Demonstrates Bias,10=Entirely Evenhanded)
General Inclination Regarding Bail (1=Pro-Defense,10=Pro-Government)
Involvement in Plea Discussions (1=Not at all Involved, 10=Very Involved)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases Pretrial Stage (1=Pro-prosecution,10=Pro-defense)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases Trial Stage (1=Pro-prosecution,10=Pro-defense)
General Inclination in Criminal Cases Sentencing Stage (1=Pro-prosecution,10=Pro-defense)

Civil Rating Criteria (if applicable)

* Evenhandedness in Civil Litigation (1=Not at all Evenhanded,10=Entirely Evenhanded)
Involvement in Settlement Discussions (1=Not at all Involved,10=Very Involved)
General Inclination (1=Pro-defendant, 10=Pro-plaintiff)

Please type what you see below:


What others have said about Hon. Garen J. Horst


Criminal Defense Lawyer

Comment #: CA34683
Rating:Not Rated
He is one of the best in Placer County. He is a true gentleman and top judge. He is fair and evenhanded and treats people with dignity and respect.


Comment #: CA28491
Rating:Not Rated
This guy is a partisan hack. Should be removed for stupidity.


Comment #: CA22643
He’s a racist he will make a judgment on He’s opinion not on evidence he will separate families he will tear families apart he’s not a judge he is a dictator He needs to be the move from this chair because he’s hurting a lot of people


Comment #: CA11692
Rating:Not Rated
Judge Horst stated that the court does not have contempt power over a third party refusing to answer a subpoena issued by the court.

Civil Litigation - Private

Comment #: CA11485
Garen Horst is hands down one of the sleaziest individuals I have ever met. It astounds me that he is allowed to practice and be a Judge no less. The man is a total piece of garbage. The guy should have been disbarred years ago. Horst is a grand stander looking to blow his horn. His epitaph will read a Judge with no robe. Terrible waste of money by the county.


Comment #: CA8863
Rating:Not Rated
Judge Horst was terrible in family cases. He does not know some of the major statutory codes. When I had a lawyer, he was reasonable but when my lawyer substituted out, he was all over the places and belligerent. He would allow you to speak then he would inject his own interpretations and THEN said "That's all" to close out the court reporter's transcript so you can't respond.


Comment #: CA8762
Rating:Not Rated
I was a juror who was dismissed by the defense attorney. I was very impressed by the way the judge handled jury selection and explaining the case. The way he treated each juror's emotional response to the case and the situation was commendable.


Comment #: CA6310
Rating:Not Rated
This judge presided over my divorce and child custody case. I was married and did not work for 23 years being a stay at home mother. I divorced my ex husband because he began to make very dangerous decisions for my children and my family. Finally had to leave when my two young girls were home alone and the police showed up and came in my home, later arresting my ex twice in front of my kids. I had to get a low paying job to survive and move my kids out. This poor excuse of a man, judge and human could have cared less about any of this. He must have had some bad divorce or something because he gave me $10 a month spousal support and less than 600$ a month child support, which I have never received. He did not listen to anything I said and my ex did all of the talking. I could not afford an attorney. My kids and I were homeless and financially wrecked. This judge believed that my ex had no job, even though he quit paying on my car and bought himself a corvette and fancy apartment. My ex continues to dine in fancy restaurants and live the high life without paying child support. It is a sad day when a judge cares nothing for the truth and allows "parents" to get away with having no responsibility for their own children.
A score of a 1 is much to high for this person.


Comment #: CA5323
Rating:Not Rated
I dont know much about Garen Horst the Judge. I do know something of his actions as a prosecutor. People v. Barmettler, 2001 I was a criminal defendant in a tragic, and fatal case of mistaken identity.
My friend was shot and killed on an isolated ranch in Newcastle. Both myself and his sister mistook him for an intruder at 3:00 in the morning. This was never disputed.

Facing un-favorable facts in the case, Mr Horst sought to introduce evidence of an earlier accidental and fatal shooting 12 years earlier under vastly different circumstances. This evidence was admitted by J.Richard Cousens on the basis of showing knowledge of the dangers of using guns. This despite the stipulation by defense that such knowedge obviously exists by anyone who uses a gun in self defense.
The jury convicted in about an hour on voulintary, in-voulantary and negligent discharge.
The 3rd DCA reversed the conviction in its entirity in a unanamous decision, (unpublished).
It seems that in Placer County one doesnt get far by playing by the rules. Garen Horst knew the evidence code and conciously disregarded it. He knew he had J.Richard Cousens in his pocket. He was entrusted to represent the People of California and willfully betrayed them as well as the law by merely arguing that this highly prejudicial and irrelevant evidence come before a jury. He had a duty to follow the law: not win at any cost.
I wonder if he has gained the integrity to make hard, and perhaps unpopular decisions required of a Judge of the Superior Court, Or will he follow in the steps of J.Richard Cousens.
I truly wonder if "Judge" Garen Horst has learned anything about fidelity to the law.

to read my case go to:



Comment #: CA4337
Having served on the City Council for the City of Colfax, and been in the legal field for 13 years, I have been disappointed in a judicial officer who rules on hearsay with no factual evidence, such as a copy of a citation from a law enforcement officer. And whereas Judge Horst found it to be credible, when a former spouse filed a restraining order for protection without factual evidence, he falls into that category. I find this to be judicial negligence, as he was once a District Attorney.