John A. "Shootin'" Houghton is a Superior Court judge in Los Angeles. He earned his nickname based on a story in which he quieted an unruly courtroom by drawing a Glock from his robes and firing a round into the ceiling.
In April of 1999, he signed search warrants for the home, office, and car of murdered civil rights attorney Howard Elias.
In January of 2002, he received from Harry Bosch search warrant applications to all 29 of the hospitals in the Los Angeles area requesting information on male patients under 16 years of age who had undergone trephination of the brain between 1975 and 1985. These search warrants were needed for the investigation relating to the bones that were found in the vacant lot at the end of Wonderland Avenue. Judge Houghton approved the warrants. Later, when the identity of Arthur Delacroix was determined, Houghton signed an addendum to a warrant authorizing the seizure of medical records pertaining to Delacroix.
In 2017 Judge Houghton was scheduled for a habeus corpus hearing in the case of Preston Borders. Harry Bosch, represented by Mickey Haller, requested to intervene due to Borders' allegations of evidence planting against Bosch. Before the hearing began, Judge Houghton agreed to receive a proffer from Haller in his chambers. In response to the proffer, Houghton sent Borders back into custody and ordered the arrest of Lance Cronyn, Kathy Cronyn and Terrence Spencer. He also ordered the D.A.'s office to make a public apology to Bosch.