Throwback Thursday

10 years ago this month:

  • The Maine Supreme Judicial Court suspended a judge for 30 calendar days without pay and censured and reprimanded him for making a knowing misrepresentation about one of his opponents in the primary election; all but 7 days of the suspension were suspended provided the judge cooperated with the Maine Assistance Program and participated in a course on judicial ethics approved by the Committee on Judicial Responsibility and Disability. In the Matter of Nadeau, 914 A.2d 714 (Maine 2007).
  • Granting a recommendation of the Commission on Judicial Conduct based on a consent agreement, the Arizona Supreme Court suspended a judge for 60 days without pay for his relationship with a woman involved in a dispute in his court. In the Matter of Morales, Judgment and Order (Arizona Supreme Court March 13, 2007).
  • Adopting the recommendation of the Commission on Judicial Performance, the Mississippi Supreme Court suspended a judge for 30 days without pay, publicly reprimanded him, and fined him $1,500 for (1) prohibiting a defendant from defending himself in a trespassing charge filed by the defendant’s ex-wife and threatening the defendant with incarceration if he appeared before the judge again in the next 2 years; (2) sua sponte and in reaction to media coverage, issuing a warrant to re-arrest a criminal defendant who had posted a bond that the judge had previously set; (3) attempting sua sponte to revoke a defendant’s probation without any written petition or affidavit, refusing to recuse himself, and revoking the defendant’s probation over the objections of the defendant’s attorney; (4) ordering a defendant not to drive a vehicle in the county for 2 years after finding the defendant not guilty of DUI; (5) twice issuing arrest warrants to have attorneys jailed without just cause; (6) dismissing cases without notice, resulting in previously assessed fines and other assessments going uncollected; and (7) amending charges against a defendant without the affiant or the prosecutor being present. Commission on Judicial Performance v. Roberts, 952 So.2d 934 (Mississippi 2007).
  • Granting a petition filed by the Commission on Judicial Standards based on stipulated findings of fact, the New Mexico Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a judge for endorsing a mayor for re-election and authorizing the use of his name in an endorsement that was published in the local newspaper. Inquiry Concerning Vincent, 172 P.3d 605 (New Mexico 2007).
  • Based on an agreed statement of facts and joint recommendation, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly censured a non-lawyer judge for failing to diligently discharge his administrative responsibilities and properly supervise his court clerks, with the result that court funds were not deposited within 72 hours of receipt or remitted to the state comptroller within the time limit required by law. In the Matter of Burin, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct March 16, 2007).
  • Based on an agreed statement of facts and joint recommendation, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly admonished a judge who personally participated in fund-raising on behalf of a civic organization by preparing flyers for fund-raising events, handing out the flyers to court employees and attorneys, and encouraging attendance at the fund-raisers. In the Matter of McNulty, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct March 16, 2007).
  • Based on an agreed statement of facts, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly admonished a non-lawyer judge who (1) contacted the state police on behalf of the woman he was dating to report an alleged violation of an order of protection and gratuitously identified himself as a town justice and (2) after disqualifying himself from a criminal case in which the woman was the complainant, commented in open court, “I want that order of protection on the record.” In the Matter of Hurley, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct March 16, 2007).
  • In attorney discipline proceedings, the Ohio Supreme Court indefinitely suspended a former judge from the practice of law for (1) improperly issuing a contempt order; (2) his conviction on a misdemeanor drug charge; and (3) grossly exceeding the bounds of professionalism during an argument with opposing counsel. Discipline Counsel v. Cox, 862 N.E.2d 514 (Ohio 2007).
  • Based on an agreement for discipline by consent, the South Carolina Supreme Court suspended a judge for 60 days without pay for issuing a subpoena to a college to try to get information for the benefit of his son-in-law in a child support dispute and misrepresenting to college officials that they were bound by the subpoena. In the Matter of Thomas, 642 S.E.2d 736 (South Carolina 2007).

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