Throwback Thursday

20 years ago this month:

  • The Alabama Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Court of the Judiciary removing a judge from office for (1) depositing a $23,000 personal check in the probate court account after examiners made a charge back, but, during the same transaction, withdrawing $23,000 from the official account and depositing it back into his personal account; (2) showing the slip indicating the deposit into the probate court account to the state examiner’s office to prove that he had paid the examiner’s charges; (3) negotiating and cashing 8 personal checks from court funds that were returned by his bank because he had insufficient funds in his account and failing to pay them for more than 3 years; (4) filing his 1996 state ethics form more than a year late; and (5) failing to properly administer his office.  Boggan v. Judicial Inquiry Commission, 759 So. 2d 550 (Alabama 1999).
  • Pursuant to the recommendation of the Commission on Judicial Conduct, the Arizona Supreme Court suspended a judge for 18 months without pay for tampering with the official transcript in a case, repeated outbursts of temper, and shouting at a court clerk.  In the Matter of Flournoy, 990 P.2d 642 (Arizona 1999).
  • Pursuant to his consent, the Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications publicly admonished a judge for granting an ex parte petition for change of custody without notice to the custodial parent and failing to communicate with the Florida judge who had assumed jurisdiction.  Public Admonition of Spencer (Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications December 28, 1999).
  • Adopting the recommendation of the Commission on Judicial Performance, the Mississippi Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a judge and fined her $3,000 for (1) abusing the contempt power and (2) illegally expunging 2 convictions.  Commission on Judicial Performance v. Sanders, 749 So. 2d 1062 (Mississippi 1999).
  • Pursuant to an agreed statement of facts, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly censured a judge for (1) a pattern of failing to advise defendants of constitutional and statutory rights; (2) engaging in ex parte communications with prosecutors outside the presence of the defense; (3) in 3 traffic cases, granting dismissals or adjournments in contemplation of dismissal without the knowledge and consent of prosecutors; and (4) eliciting from defendants who had pleaded not guilty statements concerning the charges against them or explanations of their pleas.  In the Matter of Pemrick, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct December 22, 1999).
  • Pursuant to an agreed statement of facts, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly admonished a judge who had detained a defendant for 1 hour and 40 minutes without any basis or legal process.  In the Matter of Feinman, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct December 2, 1999).
  • Pursuant to an agreed statement of facts, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly admonished a judge for (1) on her own motion, subpoenaing a ranking officer in the sheriff’s department to appear in 3 cases even though he was not a witness because she was irritated that a member of the sheriff’s department had not appeared before her as scheduled and (2) wrote another judge asking that he grant youthful offender status to the son of a town employee, putting forth mitigating circumstances, and listing her court telephone.  In the Matter of Howard, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct December 22, 1999).
  • Pursuant to an agreed statement of facts and joint recommendation, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly censured a judge for comments at an arraignment and comments to a reporter that indicated a predisposition to believe the defendant and to disfavor the woman he was charged with assaulting.  In the Matter of Bender, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct December 21, 1999).
  • Pursuant to a stipulation, the Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly admonished a judge for making comments of an offensive sexual nature.  In re Ross, Stipulation, Agreement and Order of Admonishment (Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct December 3, 1999).
  • Pursuant to a stipulation and the judge’s agreement to resign, the Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly censured a judge for (1) having a court staff person check public information on the Judicial Information System computer for purposes that were not related to court business; (2) initiating contact with the media while a case was pending before him; (3) shouting and using profanities at a public defender in chambers in the presence of others; (4) on multiple occasions, signaling his staff to go off the record without informing both parties that he was doing so; and (5) directing court staff to delete specific court docket entries, leaving an incomplete docket record during the appeal period in a case.  In re Mittet, Stipulation, Agreement and Order of Censure (Washington Commission on Judicial Conduct December 3, 1999).
  • Pursuant to a stipulation and agreement, the Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly admonished a judge for his comments to a defendant who, he believed, had threatened his son during an exchange in a store and failing to disqualify from the case.  In re Edwards, Stipulation and agreement (Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct December 29, 1999).

 

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