Throwback Thursday

10 years ago this month:

  • The Arkansas Discipline & Disability Commission publicly reprimanded a judge for failing to promptly enter an order and to accurately calculate the time that the case had been ready for adjudication. Letter of Reprimand (Simes) (Arkansas Discipline & Disability Commission November 21, 2008).
  • The Arkansas Discipline and Disability Commission publicly reprimanded a judge for failing to promptly decide several matters and to accurately reflect the time the matters had been ready for adjudication, failing to report 7 cases that had been pending for more than 90 days as required by an administrative order, and several lapses of demeanor while on the bench. Letter of Reprimand (McGowan) (Arkansas Discipline and Disability Commission November 21, 2008).
  • Pursuant to a stipulation, the California Commission on Judicial Performance publicly admonished a former judge for (1) failing to be patient, dignified, and courteous with the parties and lawyers and becoming embroiled in a matter and (2) presiding over a bench trial in consolidated unlawful detainer cases while he was a defendant in a lawsuit in which tenants of apartment units he owned raised a similar issue. In the Matter Concerning Watson, Decision and Order (California Commission on Judicial Performance November 6, 2008).
  • The California Commission on Judicial Performance publicly admonished a judge for (1) improperly advancing a trial date without notice to, or the consent of, the attorney assigned to the case; (2) improperly relieving the public defender and appointing new counsel for the defendants in several cases; and (3) making discourteous and disparaging remarks to attorneys in 3 cases. In the Matter Concerning McBride, Decision and Order (California Commission on Judicial Performance November 18, 2008).
  • Accepting a statement of circumstances and agreement for discipline, the Indiana Supreme Court suspended a judge for 3 days without pay for disrupting a sentencing hearing before another judge and confronting the defendant’s family. In the Matter of Scheibenberger, 899 N.E.2d 649 (Indiana 2008).
  • Based on a judge’s admission of some of the allegations in a formal statement of charges and his statement that he would not contest other allegations, the Nevada Commission on Judicial Discipline removed the judge for (1) a sexual affair with a court employee, ensuring the employee was paid when she was absent from work attending their sexual trysts, allowing her to work “flex” hours even though the chief district judge had prohibited such an arrangement, retaliating after she ended the affair, attempting to entice her to return to work for him in exchange for not pursuing her office of diversity complaint, violating instructions not to contact her, and destroying pictures that he should have known would be important after being contacted by the Commission; (2) sexual comments about or to court employees, his ex-wife, a fellow judge, and a female attorney; (3) inappropriate references to the race and ethnicity of employees; and (4) insulting his former law clerk. In the Matter of Del Vecchio, Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law, and Imposition of Discipline (Nevada Commission on Judicial Discipline November 6, 2008).
  • Based on an agreed statement of facts and argument on the issue of sanction, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly censured a judge for (1) permitting her co-judge’s law partners and associates to appear before her and (2) failing to disqualify from cases in which her personal attorney appeared. In the Matter of Lehmann, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct November 10, 2008).
  • Based upon the agreed facts and argument on the issue of sanction, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly admonished a judge for permitting his co-judge’s law partners to appear before him. In the Matter of Pelella, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct November 10, 2008).

Throwback Thursday

20 years ago this month:

  • The Arkansas Judicial Discipline & Disability Commission publicly censured a judge for failing to enter a decision in a case for over 3 years and failing to cooperate with the Commission. In the Matter of McKimm, Final Decision and Order (Arkansas Judicial Discipline & Disability Commission November 24, 1998).

 

Throwback Thursday  

25 years ago this month:

  • The Connecticut Supreme Court suspended a judge without pay for 15 days for failing to disqualify himself from the criminal case against a member of a family that had a history of contentious relations and litigation with a partnership in which the judge was a partner and counsel before becoming a judge and for signing an arrest warrant for that same person in an unrelated matter in 1990. In re Zoarski, 632 A.2d 1114 (Connecticut 1993).
  • Adopting the findings, conclusions, and recommendation of the Judicial Standards Commission, the North Carolina Supreme Court publicly censured a judge who twice made hostile and unprovoked comments that could reasonably be interpreted as threats of professional reprisal against individuals for what the judge perceived to be their disloyalty to and betrayal of him in connection with his divorce case. In re Hair, 436 S.E.2d 128 (North Carolina 1993).

 

Throwback Thursday

5 years ago this month:

  • The Arizona Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly reprimanded a judge for sarcastic comments he made during 2 oral arguments in appeals from justice court convictions. McClennen, Order (Arizona Commission on Judicial Conduct October 4, 2013).
  • The Arizona Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly reprimanded a judge for a standing policy that failed to comply with the statutory requirements for waiver of personal service of a citation. Mapp, Disposition of complaint (Arizona Commission on Judicial Conduct October 22, 2013).
  • Pursuant to an agreement, the Kentucky Judicial Conduct Commission publicly reprimanded a judge for his statements during a sentencing hearing that suggested the 5 under-age victims were complicit or at fault in their teacher’s sexual offenses. In re Fletcher, Agreed Order of Public Reprimand (Kentucky Judicial Conduct Commission October 7, 2013).
  • Based on an agreed statement of facts, the Mississippi Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a judge and fined him $500 for failing to disclose on the record in an asbestos case the history of asbestosis claims by his parents or to disqualify himself from the case and refusing to identify his father when asked. Commission on Judicial Performance v. Bowen, 123 So. 3d 381 (Mississippi 2013).
  • Based on a stipulation and agreement, the Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly admonished a judge for publicly stating he would not perform same-sex marriages in his judicial capacity but continuing to perform opposite-sex marriages. In re Tabor (Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct October 4, 2013).
  • Based on a stipulation and agreement, the Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly admonished a commissioner for his argument with a defendant in a hearing and the appearance that he set bail based on his displeasure with the defendant, rather than on the merits. In re Parise (Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct October 4, 2013).

 

Throwback Thursday  

10 years ago this month:

  • Pursuant to a stipulation, the California Commission on Judicial Performance publicly admonished a former judge for failing to be patient, dignified, and courteous in 5 cases. In the Matter of Bryant, Decision and Order (California Commission on Judicial Performance October 27, 2008).
  • Adopting the recommendation of the Commission on Judicial Performance based on an agreed statement of facts and proposed recommendation, the Mississippi Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a former part-time judge for representing a defendant after presiding over proceedings concerning the same defendant on the same criminal charges. Commission on Judicial Performance v. Pittman, 993 So. 2d 816 (Mississippi 2008).
  • The Mississippi Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a former judge and fined her and levied costs of $7,782.06 for repeatedly entering unlawful orders resulting in a man’s incarceration. Commission on Judicial Performance v. Boland, 998 So.2d 380 (Mississippi 2008).
  • Accepting the determination of the State Commission on Judicial Conduct, the New York Court of Appeals removed a judge from office for (1) presiding over cases in which his step-grandchildren were the defendants, (2) initiating an ex parte communication with the judge handling his step-grandson’s case, (3) arraigning a former co-worker’s son and changing a bail decision after an ex parte call from the defendant’s mother, and (4) asserting his judicial office after a car accident. In the Matter of LaBombard, 898 N.E.2d 14 (New York 2008).
  • Accepting the determination of the State Commission on Judicial Conduct, the New York Court of Appeals removed a judge for violating the fundamental due process rights of litigants in 5 cases. In the Matter of Jung, 899 N.E.2d 925 (New York 2008).
  • The New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly censured a non-lawyer judge who, in the absence of counsel and with good cause to believe that the defendant was intoxicated and incapable of understanding and asserting his rights, accepted a guilty plea at arraignment and sentenced the 19-year-old defendant to 90 days in jail without making any significant inquiry into whether the defendant was capable of entering a plea or appreciated the disadvantages of waiving the right to the assistance of counsel. In the Matter of Dunlop, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct October 28, 2008).
  • The New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly censured a judge who presided over 2 cases in which his personal attorney appeared. In the Matter of Ambrecht, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct October 28, 2008).
  • The North Carolina Supreme Court removed a judge for (1) awarding spousal support in a domestic violence protective order case when none had been requested and no evidence had been presented, ordering the bailiff to search the husband’s wallet and turn his money over to the wife; (2) making statements that created the appearance of bias; and (3) during the investigation, making untruthful, deceptive, and inconsistent statements to a State Bureau of Investigation agent and attempting to influence the recollections of a deputy clerk and the plaintiff’s attorney; the Court also disqualified him from holding further judicial office in the state and declared him ineligible for retirement benefits. In re Badgett, 666 S.E.2d 743 (North Carolina 2008).
  • The South Carolina Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a former judge for (1) referring to his judicial office in a dispute with a motorist and (2) his actions during a foreclosure action on his residence. In the Matter of Anderson, 668 S.E.2d 413 (South Carolina 2008).
  • Pursuant to the judge’s agreement, the Tennessee Court of the Judiciary publicly reprimanded a judge for failing to make findings of fact required by law in a juvenile proceeding and signing 2 orders in the case after recusing. Complaint against Rich (Tennessee Court of the Judiciary October 10, 2008).
  • The Texas State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly reprimanded a former judge for (1) allowing a grand jury he had appointed to be influenced by a friend and political supporter seeking indictments against political opponents based upon information that had been rejected by multiple independent investigative agencies and (2) requesting a court of inquiry to investigate a political opponent based on affidavits that were not credible and did not constitute probable cause. Public Reprimand of Davis (Texas State Commission on Judicial Conduct October 31, 2008).

Throwback Thursday

20 years ago this month:

  • The California Commission on Judicial Performance publicly admonished a judge for his method of handling the misdemeanor pretrial calendar, for leaving the courthouse prior to completion of the pretrial calendar once when no other judge was available to cover the calendar, and for occasionally running on the stairs near his chambers during his pretrial calendar. Inquiry Concerning Sheldon, Decision and order (California Commission on Judicial Performance October 23, 1998).
  • The California Commission on Judicial Performance publicly admonished a judge for (1) inappropriate conduct towards his courtroom clerk and (2) giving his clerk $250 to donate to a candidate for non-judicial office. Public Admonishment of Hiber (California Commission on Judicial Performance October 23, 1998).
  • Adopting a consent agreement, the California Commission on Judicial Performance publicly admonished a judge who had appointed 2 attorneys who rented office space from him and 1 attorney who had a social relationship with him to represent criminal defendants in numerous cases. Inquiry Concerning Shook, Decision and Order Imposing Public Admonishment (California Commission on Judicial Performance October 29, 1998).
  • Adopting a consent agreement, the California Commission on Judicial Performance publicly admonished a judge for failing to rule in 7 cases within 90 days as required by law. Inquiry Concerning Rogers, Decision and Order Imposing Public Admonishment (California Commission on Judicial Performance October 29, 1998).
  • Pursuant to the recommendation of the Judiciary Commission, the Louisiana Supreme Court publicly censured a judge for (1) making comments about 2 pending cases to a newspaper reporter, (2) taking a straw poll of the courtroom audience regarding the guilt of a defendant, and (3) chastising a juvenile in the courtroom. In re Best, 719 So. 2d 432 (Louisiana 1998).
  • Affirming the findings of the Commission on Judicial Performance, the Mississippi Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a judge for first offense driving under the influence of intoxicating liquor. Commission on Judicial Performance v. Thomas, 722 So. 2d 629 (Mississippi 1998).
  • The New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct removed a judge who had failed to fulfill his statutory duties to report dispositions and remit court funds to the comptroller; failed to maintain a docket of motor vehicle cases; failed to maintain a docket of criminal cases; failed to maintain a cashbook; failed to issue duplicate receipts; and in 111 cases, failed to send fine notices to defendants who had pleaded guilty by mail, failed to schedule trial for defendants who had pleaded not guilty, and failed to suspend the driving privileges of defendants who had not answered summonses, paid fines, or appeared for trial. In the Matter of Sohns, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct October 19, 1998).
  • Based upon an agreed statement of facts, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly admonished a judge who had pleaded guilty to driving while ability impaired. In the Matter of Burns, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct October 20, 1998).
  • The New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly censured a judge who had reached out to have the criminal charges against a family friend brought before him, knowing that he should not handle the case, then granted a favorable disposition. In the Matter of Jarvis, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct October 20, 1998).

 

Throwback Thursday

25 years ago this month:

  • Approving a stipulation, the Florida Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a judge who had been charged with misdemeanor driving while under the influence of alcoholic beverages and with careless driving for being at fault in an accident. Inquiry Concerning Gloeckner, 626 So. 2d 188 (Florida 1993).
  • The New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly censured a judge for (1) summarily convicting and jailing 2 men for criminal contempt without affording them procedural due process and without a factual or legal basis, (2) after agreeing to release a defend­ant, re-committing him based on ex parte information, and (3) immediately after arraignment, accepting a guilty plea from a 16-year-old unrepresented defendant whose mental stability he questioned, refusing to set bail as required by law, and denying repeated requests to allow the defendant to withdraw the plea and go to trial, even though the prosecutor consented. In the Matter of Meacham, Determination (New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct October 28, 1993).
  • The South Carolina Supreme Court publicly reprimanded a former magistrate who had pled nolo contendere or guilty to 6 counts of misconduct in office, 2 counts of assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature, and 1 count of assault of a high and aggravated nature. In the Matter of Lee, 437 S.E.2d 85 (South Carolina 1993).
  • Based on a stipulation and agreement, the Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly admonished a judge for writing a letter on official stationery and an affidavit on behalf of a child living in his home, a minor of no relation, to the American Schools of Correspondence, representing himself as a judge in the documents, and providing legal representation for the minor in the documents. In re Moynihan, Stipulation and order (Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct October 1, 1993).
  • Pursuant to a stipulation and agreement with a judge, the Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct publicly reprimanded a judge for using his chambers telephone to make numerous long distance phone calls for personal matters and for having court personnel prepare his personal correspondence using county equipment and supplies on 3 to 5 occasions over 8 years. In re Eiesland, Stipulation and order (Washington State Commission on Judicial Conduct October 1, 1993).