Thursday, April 10, 2008

A Courtroom Is Not The Jay Leno Show

Abovethelaw has a post concerning a public admonishment of a judge of the Orange County California Municipal Court. Among the high (or low) lights: holding up a hand-lettered "overruled" sign  in ruling on plaintiffs' objections, encouaging defense counsel to "give free rein to deride and make snide comments at will" (such as doing a Rod Serling Twilight Zone intro complete with music while cross-examining the plaintiff), inappropriate comments and banter ("While these comments may have been humorous to the judge and defense counsel, humor should never be used to belittle litigants or counsel.")and the use of "red cards" (a soccer reference) to deal with plaintiffs' counsel. The judge had received prior discipline for comments reflecting ethnic bias. The Commission on Judicial Performance noted that greater discipline was not imposed in light of the judge's agreement to retire. (Mike Frisch)

Judicial Ethics and the Courts | Permalink

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