Throwback Thursday

5 years ago this month:

  • The Arizona Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly reprimanded a judge for incorrectly stating that she lacked jurisdiction to consider a punitive damages claim, preventing the complainant from asking leading questions of an adverse witness, and providing inaccurate and misleading information in her response to the Commission. Parker, Order (Arizona Commission on Judicial Conduct December 20, 2011).
  • With the judge’s agreement, the Georgia Judicial Qualifications Commission made public the fact but not the content of its private reprimand of the judge for driving under the influence. In re Davis, Report of Disposition (Georgia Judicial Qualifications Commission December 15, 2011).
  • Accepting a statement of circumstances and conditional agreement for discipline, the Indiana Supreme Court suspended a judge for 60 days without pay for (1) without legal authority, referring traffic infraction litigants to a traffic school program and dismissing their cases upon their completion of the program without any request from the prosecutor and (2) statements that coerced a traffic litigant into pleading guilty. In the Matter of Harkin, 958 N.E.2d 788 (Indiana 2011).
  • Based on a report from the Committee on Judicial Responsibility and Disability, the Maine Supreme Judicial Court publicly reprimanded a judge for a pattern of unacceptable delays in managing and resolving at least 5 cases. In the Matter of Holmes, 32 A.3d 1011 (Maine 2011).
  • A 3-member panel appointed to hear a formal complaint filed by the Minnesota Judicial Standards Board publicly reprimanded a former judge for (1) sending confidential information from a sealed court file to a state senator and (2) creating an appearance of impropriety by leaving his clerk as the sole candidate for his seat when he withdrew from the race for re-election to his office after the deadline for other candidates had closed. Inquiry Concerning Armstrong, Findings and Recommendation (Panel appointed by Minnesota Supreme Court October 31, 2011).
  • Based on an agreed statement of facts and proposed recommendation, the Mississippi Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a judge and fined her $500 for ordering a mother jailed for criminal contempt without affording her due process for failing to obtain mental health treatment for her daughter. Commission on Judicial Performance v. Darby, 75 So. 3d 1037 (Mississippi 2011).
  • Based on an agreed statement of facts and proposed recommendation, the Mississippi Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a judge and fined him $1,000 for telling a defendant “if you’re convicted, I’m gonna get you,” discourteously addressing a bail bondsman and 2 lawyers, and wrongly imposing contempt sanctions against the bondsman and lawyers. Commission on Judicial Performance v. Smith, 78 So. 3d 889 (Mississippi 2011).
  • Adopting the findings and recommendation of the Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct, which the judge accepted, the New Jersey Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a former judge who repeatedly and unnecessarily referred to her judicial office when attempting to convince police officers to arrest a state investigator who had entered her home to serve a subpoena on her husband and, when they refused, belittled their work and competence. In the Matter of Muller, Order (New Jersey Supreme Court December 12, 2011).
  • Pursuant to an agreement, the Tennessee Court of the Judiciary publicly reprimanded a judge for twice publicly criticizing other judges’ decisions to lower bonds he had set. Letter to Bales (Tennessee Court of the Judiciary December 6, 2011).
  • Pursuant to an agreement, the Tennessee Court of the Judiciary publicly reprimanded a judge for handcuffing a father to a son as a punishment in a case. Letter to Zachary (Tennessee Court of the Judiciary December 27, 2011).
  • The U.S. Judicial Conference Committee on Judicial Conduct and Disability publicly reprimanded a judge for holding membership in a country club that practices invidious discrimination on the basis of race and sex. In re Complaint of Judicial Misconduct, 2011 U.S. App. LEXIS 26454  (U.S. Judicial Conference Committee on Judicial Conduct and Disability 2011).

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