Judicial misconduct cases draw action

Capital News Service
LANSING – It has been a tough year so far for some judges. In Ottawa County, District Judge Kenneth Post faces ethics charges alleging that he failed to follow the law, behaved inappropriately toward a defense lawyer and “trivialized” the seriousness of a criminal case. Post acknowledged in legal papers that his courtroom comments to the lawyer were “sarcastic and possibly demeaning,” that he failed to act courteously and “may have made an error of law,” but denied any serious violations of the state’s Code of Judicial Conduct. In Wayne County, Circuit Judge Deborah Adams faces ethics charges in which the Judicial Tenure Commission accused her of making misrepresentations under oath and forgery in her own divorce case. She denies any misconduct, and her hearing has concluded, with a decision expected soon, said commission Executive Director Paul Fischer.

Fewer residents mean fewer judges, state says

Capital News Service
LANSING – Michigan is eliminating 36 trial court judgeships, a move that is expected to save the state around $6 million a year in judges’ salaries, an average $140,000 each. “This is the largest cut in judgeships ever accomplished in the United States,” said Supreme Court Chief Justice Robert Young. “It is unprecedented.”
That includes four Upper Peninsula positions. “This right-sizing of our judiciary is the front edge of reforms we need to make for a more service-oriented and efficient court system,” Young said. The cuts will be made through attrition over several years.