"If the judges interpret the laws themselves, and suffer none else to interpret, they may easily make, of the laws, [a shredded] shipman's hose!" - King James I of England, around 1616.

“No class of the community ought to be allowed freer scope in the expression or publication of opinions as to the capacity, impartiality or integrity of judges than members of the bar. They have the best opportunities of observing and forming a correct judgment. They are in constant attendance on the courts. Hundreds of those who are called on to vote never enter a court-house, or if they do, it is only at intervals as jurors, witnesses or parties. To say that an attorney can only act or speak on this subject under liability to be called to account and to be deprived of his profession and livelihood by the very judge or judges whom he may consider it his duty to attack and expose, is a position too monstrous to be entertained for a moment under our present system,” Justice Sharwood in Ex Parte Steinman and Hensel, 95 Pa 220, 238-39 (1880).

“This case illustrates to me the serious consequences to the Bar itself of not affording the full protections of the First Amendment to its applicants for admission. For this record shows that [the rejected attorney candidate] has many of the qualities that are needed in the American Bar. It shows not only that [the rejected attorney candidate] has followed a high moral, ethical and patriotic course in all of the activities of his life, but also that he combines these more common virtues with the uncommon virtue of courage to stand by his principles at any cost.

It is such men as these who have most greatly honored the profession of the law. The legal profession will lose much of its nobility and its glory if it is not constantly replenished with lawyers like these. To force the Bar to become a group of thoroughly orthodox, time-serving, government-fearing individuals is to humiliate and degrade it.” In Re Anastaplo, 18 Ill. 2d 182, 163 N.E.2d 429 (1959), cert. granted, 362 U.S. 968 (1960), affirmed over strong dissent, 366 U.S. 82 (1961), Justice Black, Chief Justice Douglas and Justice Brennan, dissenting.

" I do not believe that the practice of law is a "privilege" which empowers Government to deny lawyers their constitutional rights. The mere fact that a lawyer has important responsibilities in society does not require or even permit the State to deprive him of those protections of freedom set out in the Bill of Rights for the precise purpose of insuring the independence of the individual against the Government and those acting for the Government”. Lathrop v Donohue, 367 US 820 (1961), Justice Black, dissenting.

"The legal profession must take great care not to emulate the many occupational groups that have managed to convert licensure from a sharp weapon of public defense into blunt instrument of self-enrichment". Walter Gellhorn, "The Abuse of Occupational Licensing", University of Chicago Law Review, Volume 44 Issue 1, September of 1976.

“Because the law requires that judges no matter how corrupt, who do not act in the clear absence of jurisdiction while performing a judicial act, are immune from suit, former Judge Ciavarella will escape liability for the vast majority of his conduct in this action. This is, to be sure, against the popular will, but it is the very oath which he is alleged to have so indecently, cavalierly, baselessly and willfully violated for personal gain that requires this Court to find him immune from suit”, District Judge A. Richard Caputo in H.T., et al, v. Ciavarella, Jr, et al, Case No. 3:09-cv-00286-ARC in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, Document 336, page 18, November 20, 2009. This is about judges who were sentencing kids to juvenile detention for kickbacks.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Porter Kirkwood for judge! He is exactly what Delaware County needs - clueless, vindictive and ready to lie to protect somebody with a status

Porter Kirkwood now officially announced that he is "running" for the second seat of the County judge in Delaware County, New York.

Exactly as the number of cases in Delaware County is dwindling, the second judge became necessary.  At $152,000.00 a year, and the current judge's (Carl F. Becker's) friend and former colleague and subordinate for years.

Porter Kirkwood is the only attorney I know who lost a trial with nobody appearing in opposition and while having all available resources.  He simply did not use the resources and assumed that he will win anyway.  He lost.

Porter Kirkwood prosecuted a child neglect case where he treated the child as an adverse, hostile party, instead of trying to protect him.  The interesting detail was that the reason he treated the child as a hostile party because the child's interests were, indeed, adverse - to Porter Kirkwood's own son.

Many people who live in Delaware County know from personal experience, and I wrote a lot on this blog how Carl F. Becker fails to disclose his own conflicts of interest, fails to recuse himself when such conflicts of interests exist and retaliates against people who raise the issue of that conflict of interest, or simply people who Carl F. Becker does not like.

Porter Kirkwood is a good student of Carl F. Becker's style, having worked under Carl F. Becker for years, and having been Carl F. Becker's friend for the years Carl F. Becker was on the bench.  Kirkwood was regularly seen behind the courthouse talking to Becker while having cases pending in front of Becker, and who knows how many times they communicated without being seen.

I described here how Porter Kirkwood lied to me that my client does not have a file with Social Services.  Had he told me the truth, I would have learnt during the pendency of the Family Court case that Becker is disqualified from the case by his extrajudicial knowledge of the case and by participation in the case as the attorney for the Social Services, and adoption attorney for one of the relatives of a party, due to which conflicted situation the Delaware County Department of Social Services, then represented by Becker, created a secret indicated report against the wrong person, without that person's knowledge (but with Becker's knowledge).

I learned about Porter Kirkwood's lie only in 2013, when the existence of the file and of the contents in the file came up through proceedings in another county.

The Family Court (judge Connerton) rejected without any reasoning the motion to vacate due to Becker's non-disclosure.  Well, nothing like corporate solidarity between judges.  Now Porter Kirkwood is joining into the brotherhood, and will continue his dirty tricks on the bench.  Exactly what Delaware County needs.

Porter Kirkwood is very vindictive, which is another trait that this county absolutely needs in a judge. After all, his current client the Department of Social Services brought a frivolous and fraudulent child neglect proceeding after I asked Judge Becker to recuse, and I was the first attorney (according to what I was told) who did that based on Becker's non-disclosure to the parties and counsel that he is presiding over a bench trial (judge as a factfinder) where he is "finding" issues of credibility of his own former clients and colleagues, about whom he has extrajudicial knowledge.

Porter Kirkwood's agency and Porter Kirkwood also brought that child neglect to try to label my child for purposes of possible (and still possible) lawsuit against Porter Kirkwood's son for a gang assault against my child on the school's ground.

Nothing like the father of a child who assaulted your child prosecuting you for child neglect (meaning that he must protect the interests of my child against me) and, during such a prosecution, trying to "evaluate" your child and label your child to weaken future litigation of your child against his son.

That was, to me, the ONLY purpose of the proceedings (well, apart from humiliating and labeling us as child abusers or neglectful parents).  That was the proceeding where Kirkwood brought in an expert who, without ever seeing the child, attempted to labeled him (I do not know how much Kirkwood paid him to sell out his professional ethics). 

Yet, somehow that did not work.  Had my child been labeled, he would have had a weaker case against Porter Kirkwood's own child in the future potential gang assault litigation tolled due to infancy.  Porter Kirkwood could not stand such a chance.  Porter Kirkwood is a really ethical lawyer, you know.  So he rushed to protect - who? - his own son's interests - by using his position as an Assistant County attorney and prosecutor of child neglect cases.  Yet, the case was dismissed.

Just the integrity and temperament we need for Delaware County and Family Court judge.

Recently, I placed on this blog two recordings - of the Chief of Delaware County jail and of Porter Kirkwood.  The Chief of Delaware County jail lied to me that all attorneys' files are being searched when they come to see inmates in that jail (while that never happened for 40 years, it is illegal, and they started to do that to me only when I started to represent a particular client, the person who Becker hated, who sued Becker in one case, who served Becker with a lawsuit in another case).

In his recording Porter Kirkwood pretended that he does not know about the policies of the Chief of jail in his own county - meaning, he confirmed that as an attorney he is incompetent.

I also know that Porter Kirkwood had a private practice on the side while he was a full-time county employee, and had paying private cases which presented a conflict of interest to him as then Assistant County Attorney (he defended a case claiming elder abuse when, as an Assistant County Attorney, Kirkwood had to investigate and protect victims of elder abuse). 

Kirkwood also represented those conflicted private clients during his taxpayer-paid county time.  But, of course, Becker and Kirkwood could not entrust handling this case to any other defense attorney or judge.  Becker forgave Kirkwood incompetent representation and failure to raise defense of standing in the Answer, and the Appellate Division affirmed, ignoring the issue of waiver.

Also, please, bear in mind that if you elect Gary Rosa, Gary Rosa did not work for social services for decades and does not have extrajudicial knowledge about people in front of him regarding what is the file of people who were investigated, and, possibly, have secret undisclosed indicated reports against them which never came to be reviewed in court.

Porter Kirkwood has such knowledge, which already disqualifies him from presiding over many cases.  No litigant in Delaware County can consider himself or herself safe from having a secret file on them with Porter Kirkwood's current client the Delaware County Department of Social Services.  Nothing like having a judge who does not disclose his extra-judicial knowledge about you (unfavorable) or about social services' witnesses (favorable, as his former colleagues) presiding over your trial as the only fact-finder, and Porter Kirkwood will also preside over criminal trials and sentencings and may factor in such secret information that he knows and you don't, into his sentencing decisions.

With his level of "integrity", I have no reason to doubt that Kirkwood will be using the secret information against you without telling you.

Incompetent, vindictive, unethical - what more do you need in a Delaware County and Family Court judge?  You will have twins in the courthouse.  And with those twins glued to the bench, you will have nowhere else to go, they will block with their butts all doors to justice for you and all opportunities to ever have an impartial and competent judicial review of your cases.

Vote!  .... for somebody else.

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