Recent cases

  • Based on an agreement, the Alabama Court of the Judiciary suspended a judge for 180 days without pay for “an almost complete failure to operate or administer her small claims docket in accordance with the law, rules of court, and effective administrative procedures.” In the Matter of Pettway, Final judgment (Alabama Court of the Judiciary January 21, 2016).
  • Based on an agreement and stipulation, the Alabama Court of the Judiciary censured a judge for instructing criminal defendants who owed court-ordered financial assessments and who did not have any money to donate blood or go to jail.  In the Matter of Wiggins, Final judgment (Alabama Court of the Judiciary January 21, 2016).
  • The California Commission on Judicial Performance admonished a judge for signing and submitting on 8 occasions false salary affidavits that stated he had no submitted cases pending and undetermined over 90 days and for receiving his salary in violation of law on 6 occasions. Public Admonishment of Wilson (California Commission on Judicial Performance January 23, 2016).
  • The California Commission on Judicial Performance admonished a judge for, despite having been warned by the court about his behavior, treating certain women at court inappropriately. Public Admonishment of Bergeron (California Commission on Judicial Performance January 25, 2016).
  • Based on a stipulation for discipline by consent, the California Commission on Judicial Performance censured a judge for (1)(a) failing for nearly 2 years to make payments to his ex-wife from his Air Force pension that were required by the judgment entered in their marital dissolution and deliberately failing to inform her that he had retired and was receiving his pension; (b) making false statements to others about advice he had received from his ex-wife’s former attorney, now a court commissioner, that impugned the commissioner’s integrity; (c) directing which judge on his court would handle the stipulation and order settling the pension issue; (2)(a) sending a disparaging, undignified, and discourteous e-mail response to the assistant presiding judge’s inquiry about his availability to help cover the court’s calendar; (b) responding intemperately to the rotation of a particular court reporter to his courtroom; and (3) failing to disqualify himself when a close personal friend appeared as an attorney in a case and failing to disclose the relationship. Inquiry Concerning Trice (California Commission on Judicial Performance February 4, 2016).
  • With the judge’s consent, the D.C. Commission on Judicial Disabilities and Tenure released its determination that a judge’s modification of a defendant’s sentence outside the presence of the parties violated the code of judicial conduct. Re:  Williams, Determination and undertaking (D.C. Commission on Judicial Disabilities and Tenure January 20, 2016).
  • Based on the judge’s agreement, the Kentucky Judicial Conduct Commission reprimanded a judge for his treatment of an investigator for the attorney general’s office during a hearing. In re Easterling, Order (Kentucky Judicial Conduct Commission December 18, 2015).
  • Adopting the findings and recommendation of the Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct, which the judge accepted, New Jersey Supreme Court reprimanded a part-time judge for representing a wife in a divorce proceeding after taking action in mutual harassment complaints filed by her and her husband and while those actions were pending in his court and failing to disqualify himself from the harassment complaints immediately after undertaking to represent the wife. In the Matter of Bowkley, Order (New Jersey Supreme Court February 3, 2006).
  • The New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct censured a judge for driving while under the influence of alcohol and repeatedly asserting his judicial office in connection with his arrest. In the Matter of Landicino, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct December 28, 2015).
  • Based on stipulated facts, the Pennsylvania Court of Judicial Discipline removed a former judge and declared him ineligible to hold judicial office based on his guilty plea in federal court to 1 count of mail fraud and 1 count of honest services wire fraud, both felonies. In re Waters, Opinion and order (Pennsylvania Court of Judicial Discipline January 12, 2016).
  • Pursuant to the judge’s agreement, the Tennessee Board of Judicial Conduct reprimanded a judge for disposing of numerous criminal and juvenile cases in which the defendants were represented by his wife; the Board also entered a cease and desist order in which the judge agreed not to be involved in any cases in which his spouse represents a party. Re Grimes (Tennessee Board of Judicial Conduct January 11, 2016).

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