"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.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Louisiana #JudgeLaurieWhite wastes scarce taxpayer funded judicial resources on wielding her fury against supporter of her opponent in judicial elections

In an extremely rare case, in Louisiana, a judge held a prosecutor in contempt of court for texting the judge and requesting the judge to stop badmouthing the prosecutor.

Of course, how many defense attorneys would know the judge's cell phone number to be able to text her, and it is a big issue that the prosecutor in question did know the judge's cell phone number, raising questions of possible longtime ex parte communications of that particular prosecutor's office with this particular judge, and with other judges, requiring, in my opinion, a disciplinary investigation.

Yet, as to contempt proceedings brought against the prosecutor by that particular judge, there were constitutional prohibitions for such a contempt prosecution that the judge, with an admittedly bad temper,

disregarded in holding the prosecutor in contempt.

Despite the clear due process prohibition for the judge to act as a "witness, prosecutor, judge and jury" in a contempt hearing that she had herself brought and that involved an alleged "insult" to herself, despite a most recent prohibition on being n "accuser and an adjudicator" in the same case issued in 2016 by the U.S. Supreme Court in Williams v. Pennsylvania, and where her own misconduct was the reason for the text messages, a misconduct that was brought up in testimony of witnesses other than the prosecutor charged with contempt, Judge Laurie White

still held the prosecutor Jason Napoli in contempt of court for texting her.

That judge White was biased against the prosecution, and against that particular prosecutor, is an understatement of the century.

During Jason Napoli's contempt proceedings instituted by Judge White, a witness testified that the judge made the following unsolicited comments about Jason Napoli to his subordinate, attorney Brian Ebarb, during their very first meeting:

First, a judge who holds such views, has no business presiding over proceedings represented by attorneys she so acutely dislikes, it is called a mandatory disqualification for bias.

Second, a judge has no business using four-letter language in court proceedings, that's another point of immediate disqualification.

Third, a judge has an ethical prohibition against badmouthing an attorney to the face of his subordinate in the attorney's absence, where the badmouthed attorneys have no ability to defend themselves, and where the subordinate attorney is used as a captive audience.

And fourth, but definitely not least problem here is that the judge badmouthed attorney Napoli and Cannizzaro, comparing them to "Satan and Lucifer" after the judge has lost her election campaign to a higher, appellate, court, to a "candidate backed by Cannizzaro", Judge Regina Bartholomew-Woods.

In the election campaign, which reportedly got "ugly" and where both candidates "took their gloves off", according to Judge White herself, Judge Bartholomew-Woods pointed out the following problems with Judge White's candidacy for a higher judicial seat:

So, Judge White's opinion that prosecutors Napoli and Cannizzaro are "Satan", "Lucifer", "a**holes", lazy and stupid could very well be attributable not only to the judge's admittedly bad temper, but to the fact that attorney Cannizzaro supported Judge White's successful opponent to a seat with higher power and salary, and to attorney Cannizzaro's opinion that Judge White is "unfit for the appellate court" - and, by extension, for any other court as well.

Of course, hell hath no fury as a woman scorned, but that woman should not be on the bench wielding her rage in criminal cases.

Apparently, the state of Louisiana is so strapped for cash that

Yet, the same State of Louisiana has enough money to allow its criminal judge Laurie White, who admitted to her bad temperament, but was not removed from the bench at the time of her admission, to continue to waste taxpayers' money by instituting and prosecuting a frivolous contempt proceeding against an attorney she hates for personal reasons.

I wonder if the Louisiana judicial disciplinary authorities will have a say against Judge Laurie White - or, whether, like they did in the case of #attorneyChristineMire who exposed egregious misconduct of #JudgePhyllisKeaty (see my blogs about Christine Mire's case as it developed, here, here, here, and here), instead, the attorney disciplinary system will be used against prosecutor Napoli to further retaliate against him for daring to raise the issue of judicial misconduct .

Prosecutor Napoli, once again, raised Judge White's misconduct improperly, in a text message to the judge.

He was supposed to do that in a motion to recuse.

Yet, because attorneys in the State of Louisiana were intimidated against daring to make motions to recuse, even with irrefutable evidence of judicial misconduct in hand, given the recent fate of attorney Christine Mire who was suspended from the practice of law and made to pay tens of thousands of dollars for being prosecuted for seeking for her client a constitutional right for impartial judicial review, after making a proper motion to recuse (while Judge Phyllis Keaty was promoted to an appellate court), who can blame attorney Napoli for seeking more discreet ways to point the judge's misconduct to the judge?

And once again, a question - will Judge Laurie White be investigated and disciplined for her misconduct in this case?

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