I continue reporting on the story of Anthony Pacherille, 16-year-old mentally disabled boy who was sentenced as an adult to 11 years of adult maximum security prison (instead of a youthful offender status to which he was entitled) by Otsego County (NY) Judge Brian Burns who prefers to go easy on wealthy drunk killers of poor women and maimer of poor children than to do his duty of fairness towards a teenage defendant.
I also reported that the likely reason why Judge Burns denied the YO status to the child was because the child's father had the misfortunate of asking Judge Burns for mercy, as a father of a teenager to a father of a teenager.
Judge Burns, who paraded his three teenage children in front of everybody at his swearing-in ceremony just 5 months prior to the Pacherille-father's letter to the court (sent as part of pre-sentencing procedure and approved by the child's attorney), felt threatened by the letter - but did not recuse, and instead retaliated for the father's letter against the child.
See the prior parts of Anthony Pacherille's story reported on this blog here:
In Part 4, I also reported how Tony Pacherille tried to verify Judge Burns' address to satisfy the ordinance of the City of Oneonta that requires to disclose ahead of time the place of peaceful demonstrations. Tony Pacherille wanted to demonstrate in front of Judge Burns' home, went to the home, knocked on the door, Burns' wife opened the door, Pacherille-senior asked whether it was judge Burns' residence, the wife answered "yes" and asked Tony Pacherille to leave, he did leave.
I also reported in Part 4 how Judge Burns unlawfully used, at taxpayers' expense, a highly paid attorney representing the Office of New York Court Administration (NY OCA) to pen and send to Pacherille-father a letter, fraudulently representing to Tony Pacherille (the father of the teenager Anthony Pacherille) that the NY OCA represents Judge Burns (in a private matter), and that the father should cease and desist coming to Judge Burns' residence, otherwise civil or criminal action will be considered.
The letter from John McConnell (NY OCA attorney) was dated August 3, 2011.
Judge Burns submitted a deposition sworn to on August 5, 2011 to a criminal court, as a witness and complainant in a criminal proceeding against Tony Pacherille, indicating that Judge Burns felt threatened by the letter of Tony Pacherille written to the court as part of pre-sentencing procedure before Burns proceeded to sentencing Tony Pacherille's son.
Tony Pacherille was actually prosecuted for harassment based on deposition of Judge Burns, and the proceeding was dismissed by Judge Downey based on 1st Amendment grounds.
Tony Pacherille sued Burns in federal court.
Usually, judges are represented in actions pertaining to their official duties by the New York State Attorney General.
The docket report of the lawsuit shows that initially Burns was represented in that case by the New York State Attorney General:
Note Docket 4 dated 7/15/2013, Notice of Appearance of attorney Stephen M. Kerwin.
Note below attorney registration information of the same Stephen M. Kerwin as working for the NYS Attorney General's office.
Yet, on September 3, 2013, Docket 19, a law firm Hancock & Estabrook filed with the court a "letter motion" requesting permission to allow it to proceed on Burns' behalf, and directed the "letter motion" to the decision of Judge David Peebles.
Here is the letter of Hancock Estabrook and attached stipulation with NY Attorney General for the substitution.
It took David Peebles only two days to give business to Hancock Estabrook, under the circumstances where NY AG's office would have represented Burns for the set salary, and Hancock Estabrook would be paid out of New York taxpayers' pockets additionally.
Here is the caption of an order from that lawsuit dated 7/3/14, a year after the lawsuit was filed:
As I already described in Part 4 of Anthony Pacherille's story, abbreviations "GLS" and "DEP" on the path on top of the filing in federal court show the names of the assigned judge and magistrate, the then Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of New York Gary L. Sharpe and Magistrate David E. Peebles.
Now let's see whether there is any appearance of impropriety in David Peebles presiding over Tony Pacherille's case and especially making the orders of substitution of counsel, without any disclosures to the parties or the court.
According to the biography of Chief Magistrate Peebles posted on the website of that court, David E. Peebles came to the bench from that law firm, Hancock and Estabrook, and was "affiliated" with that law firm since 1978, for 27 years.
Review of the website of NDNY bar association reveals that:
1) only a few prominent law firms are Trustees, Officers and members of "standing committees" of the bar association, and as such, are in frequent contact with judges of the court and communicate and take directives from the Chief Judge of the court;
2) Hancock Estabrook is one of those law firms - its partner Doreen Simmonds (a co-alumni with David Peebles not only in the law firm, but also in Peebles' prior employment in the Onondaga County District Attorney's office) is:
(2) A member of two "standing committees" of the NDNY bar association, one of them requiring a close interaction (ex parte as to any parties and opposing counsel in any litigation Hancock Estabrook handles in NDNY court) with a judge of that court Frederick Scullin and his employee
(3) "coincidentally", Doreen Simmonds is also a recipient of a "Judge Duane" award for, among her other accomplishment, "promoting relations between the bench and the bar".
4) Doreen Simmonds is also a member of a secret-membership organization sponsoring judges and their law clerk's trips abroad, and monthly dining and wining for judges, the American Inns of Court, and received an award from that organization in 2013.
As of September 23, 2013, right at the time when Hancock Estabrook appeared as Burns' counsel in Pacherille's case, Doreen Simmonds was also a Chair of the Attorney Grievance Committee in the Fifth Judicial District - so her law firm was covered on all sides.
By establishing close social ties with the Onondaga County District Attorney's office (where the DA is a law school buddy with the Chief Judge of the Fifth Judicial District James Tormey), with a judge of the Northern District of New York, by "serving" as officers, trustees, members of "standing committees" of the NDNY bar association that is merged at the hip with the NDNY federal court, by having its partner former partner chair the local attorney disciplinary committee, Hancock Estabrook covered all bases - to drum up business, get the ear of judges and escape any possible discipline.
It is clear that with so much on her plate in terms of public service, Doreen Simmonds would not have time for work, but, there is an appearance that her "public service" in "promoting relationships between the bench and the bar", specifically, between her law firm and the Northern District of New York court, likely an ex parte relationship based on past ties with Magistrate Peebles, IS her main job.
Also, please, note that the firm employs an attorney by the last name of D'Agostino that has a striking facial resemblance with the court's judge Mae D'Agostino:
The firm has even more connections with Judge Peebles and the court.
Even though the moot competition was hosted before the filing of the lawsuit, not all law firms can have a judge to preside over a competition they sponsor, and "coincidentally" the presiding judge is the former partner of the main sponsor, showing the close social and emotional ties of judge Peebles with Hancock Estabrook.
As always, Judge Burns chose wisely - in his usual corrupt way.
Same as in sentencing - lenient for the rich and powerful, blasting against those who crossed his fragile little ego, to the point of retaliating against the child for the requests of leniency by the father - Burns unmistakeably chose one law firm that was dear to the heart of one of the presiding judges, Magistrate Peebles.
And, instead of disclosing his connections to the law firm and recusing from the case, David Peebles presides over the substitution of counsel "letter motion" and grants it - in two days only.
For the detailed description as to how the court got rid of Tony Pacherille's federal lawsuit against Judge Burns after Hancock Estabrook appeared on Burns' behalf, stay tuned for my next post.
As to what happened after the dismissal...
One of the partners of the firm, Janet Callahan, was appointed on November 6, 2015, according to Hancock Estabrook's own press-release, to the so-called "screening committee" for the appointment of Chief Judge of the New York State Court of Appeals, the chief state judge, and "interviewed candidates" for the position of the Chief Judge of the New York State Court of Appeals.
As always, such "interviewing" was committed to an attorney from a powerful law firm with an incestous relationship with the judiciary and who is financially interested in the outcome of their own "screenings", not to the public.
The appointment of a Hancock Estabrook partner to the position of choosing a possible candidate for the position of Chief Judge of New York State was made after Hancock Estabrook obtained from the pair of federal judges Sharpe-Peebles (Peebles being their former law partner) a dismissal of a lawsuit against a state judge Burns for misconduct outside of his judicial capacity.
Hancock Estabrook served the state judiciary well, Judge Peebles helped them do that service and get business, now Hancock will give back to the state judiciary through the screening committee.
And, of course, the Sharpe-Peebles tandem dismissed not only the lawsuit against Burns, but also the lawsuit against his partner in crime Otsego County DA John Muehl.
John Muehl, of course, misrepresented the dismissal to the public in a public statement to the local newspapers "The Daily Star" (of Oneonta, NY) that the lawsuit was dismissed because there was no truth in it.
Yet, the lawsuit was dismissed without reaching the merits of the case. When a lawsuit is dismissed on the grounds of prosecutorial immunity for corrupt acts, the issue whether the corrupt acts occurred remains wide open.
John Muehl apparently conceals from the public the fact that the lawsuit against him was dismissed on prosecutorial immunity grounds, and conceals the fact that prosecutorial immunity was (unconstitutionally) give by the U.S. Supreme Court to criminal prosecutors in reliance on "availability" of attorney discipline - which, we know it for a fact, is not available in New York against criminal prosecutors.
So, both Burns and Muehl, undisciplined, unaccountable and empowered by lack of accountability, remain on the loose.
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