July 28, 2009
Charges Filed Against Judges
A magisterial district judge in suburban Philadelphia is accused of reducing a fine her grandson got for underage drinking and screaming at a police officer.
The state Judicial Conduct Board made the allegations Monday in a complaint about District Judge Susan McEwen.
The complaint says McEwen's then-18-year-old grandson was cited for underage drinking at a 2007 party held at her home while she slept. The case was assigned to another judge, who found the teen guilty and fined him $300. The complaint says McEwen reduced the fine to $150.
McEwen is also accused of screaming and swearing at a police officer about being called in to sign a warrant at about 4 a.m.
McEwen's lawyer didn't immediately respond to a phone message left Monday night.
The Examiner.com reports on unrelated charges against another judge:
A state watchdog panel Monday charged a district judge from Erie County with violating the state constitution and ethical rules by harassing women and lying about his qualifications to hold office.
The Judicial Conduct Board alleged that Judge Gerard L. Alonge brought disrepute to the judiciary by making harassing phone calls and having improper contact with more than a half-dozen women, including lawyers and law clerks he worked with.
Erie County's president judge, Elizabeth Kelley, asked the board to investigate after she issued two written warnings to Alonge to stop the harassment. In the most recent letter, written earlier this year, she advised Alonge that he was "well on his way to destruction," the board said in its complaint.
While campaigning for office in 2005, Alonge also misrepresented himself as an adjunct faculty member of the criminal justice department at Mercyhurst College-North East, the board said. Although he was on a list of people available to teach, he never taught a class as an adjunct professor, it said.
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