10 years ago this month:
- Pursuant to an agreed disposition, the Massachusetts Commission on Judicial Conduct permanently closed with an expression of concern formal charges alleging that a judge abused the power of custody by ordering a court officer to take into custody a 19-year-old defendant when she was walking out of the courtroom, without giving her any warning or attempting to follow any of the procedures for a finding of summary contempt and even though she was not disrupting court business. In re Ruma, Agreed Disposition (Massachusetts Commission on Judicial Conduct April 13, 2006).
- Pursuant to a stipulation and agreement, the Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct admonished a judge for impatient, undignified, and/or discourteous demeanor in 3 cases. (1) The judge used inappropriate humor, making light of a defendant’s personal circumstances during a hearing, and was overly critical of the same defendant for attempting to appeal her sentence in a subsequent hearing. (2) The judge reprimanded a defendant’s mother (an alleged victim of domestic violence) in an unreasonably abrupt, loud, and harsh manner for interrupting a proceeding. (3) The judge made comments that were mocking and dismissive of concerns expressed by a defendant’s mother and girlfriend. In re Moore, Stipulation, Agreement, and Order (Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct April 7, 2006).