Judge Townsend’s term of office as a Circuit Court Judge ran from 1972 through 1974. The Holland Evening Sentinel (4 Nov 1972, page 2) reported the following description of his judiciary:
Townsend has some quiet but definite ideas about the role of the Circuit Judge. He says, for example, that a judge is not benefiting anyone by withholding punishment until a serious crime is committed. He believes that prompt action, perhaps a short jail sentence early in a criminal pattern, is far better than years spent in a state prison after many violations. Welfare has been a “sore spot” in the minds of many people in our community, and in many other areas for that matter. Townsend points out that a major factor is the willful failure of fathers to support their children. Townsend says he believes that a judge should require every father who is able to work to support his minor children. And he should either do it or go to jail. Many people do not realize that the Circuit Court is over the District Courts. Townsend believes that the circuit court should exercise its power of superintending control over the District Court activities. He believes that, among the District Courts of Ottawa County, we need consistency, cooperation, and coordination, if there is to be an effective, unified, law enforcement program. About the circuit courts themselves. Townsend says he believes that the courts must use modern business methods as tools to aid achieving prompt, yet fair, decisions. He said that judges must be firmly dedicated to eliminating unnecessary delay and red tape in processing litigation.