Monday, June 29, 2009
The Louisiana Supreme Court agreed with a finding of its Judiciary Commission that a judge had violated the Code of Judicial Conduct but rejected the proposed public censure sanction because the "wrongdoing does not rise to the level of misconduct warranting the imposition of a disciplinary sanction." The judge sat in a high-volume drug court and had regularly ordered that defendants pay a fine for the benefit of the "I Care" drug program while serving on the program's advisory council. The fines totalled $83,550.00
The court states:
In making this decision, we rely on [his] unblemished record on the judicial bench. Moreover, any potential appearence of impropriety subject of these proceedings stems solely from his admirable personal and judicial efforts to improve his community through substance abuse prevention and education. While we in no way condone his actions and strongly caution him to refrain from similar judicial misjudgment in the future, we do not find his actions to rise to the level of sanctionable misconduct.