20 years ago this month
- Upholding the recommendation of the Commission on Judicial Performance, the California Supreme Court removed a judge who had (1) engaged in several business transactions with and accepted a gift from a litigant to whom he had awarded a substantial verdict, (2) advised members of a law firm on cases pending before other judges, (3) received gifts from attorneys whose interests had or were likely to come before him, (4) failed to disqualify himself or make full disclosure of his relationship with those attorneys or their firms when they appeared before him, and (5) made material misrepresentations and omissions to the Commission during its investigation. Adams v. Commission on Judicial Performance, 897 P.2d 544 (California 1995).
- Based on an agreed statement of facts and joint recommendation, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct censured a judge who had (1) repeatedly issued dispositive orders without making findings of fact or setting forth his reasoning, contrary to law and despite criticism by the appellate court in 10 cases; (2) repeatedly refused to accept reply papers on the day of oral argument for contested motions, even though the papers were served within the permissible period, despite appellate court decisions reversing his rulings on those grounds; (3) a heated verbal confrontation with a neighbor that resulted in the police questioning him; and (4) failed to disclose on his 1992 financial disclosure statement that he was co-mortgagor of another individual’s property on which his own property was collateral and to disclose income from rental property. In the Matter of Dier, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct July 14, 1995) (www.cjc.ny.gov/).
- The New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct determined that censure was the appropriate sanction for a part-time judge who, to retaliate for her firing from her other employment, had imposed on her former supervisor a fine that was twice as high as any fine she had imposed before. In the Matter of Lindell-Cloud, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct July 14, 1995) (www.cjc.ny.gov/).
- The North Dakota Supreme Court censured a former judge who had served as a member of a municipal airport authority and drafted lease agreements for the authority. In the Matter of Grenz, 534 N.W.2d 816 (North Dakota 1995).