by Judge London:
When Judges break the Law, Society comes apart. A Judge must maintain a high standard of conduct or be prepared to go to jail. A Court-room deprived of its Judge is like a soldier in battle who looses his horse because his horse looses a shoe. Society’s war against crime is jeopardized.
A Judge can break the Law in many ways. A Judge break the Law inside the court room. One way is to simply ignore the Law. If one party cites the statues and the case law, and the opposing party doesn’t have a leg to stand on, according to the Doctrine of Stare Decisis, the party with the case law on its side should win. Stare Decisis is the policy of courts to abide by principles established by decisions in earlier cases. If the judge simply ignores the law and fails to follow the policy of Stare Decisis but rules against the party that was legally right, then that Judge has broken the Law. Should that be a punishable offense?
Judges can lie in their Judicial Orders and their Decisions. That would amount to perjury. Judges are always under oath. Stating an untruth verbally or in writing would be perjury.
Also, if a Judge cites a Case as authority for their Ruling when that Case is not really on point, then that Judge has lied. The Case cited may only be peripherally related to the Issues in the Case. If the Judge knowingly cites the Case as authority, then the Judge has lied under Oath.
A Judge can use his position as a Judge to further his own personal philosophy. He can hide under the cloak of Judicial Immunity all the while perverting Justice in the name of The Greater Good.
Leonard Steven Grasz, is a judicial nominee put forward by President Trump to fill a vacancy on the Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. Grasz was forced to remove his name from consideration when the American Bar Association (ABA) gave him a failing grade.
After interviewing hundreds of lawyers and judges who had interacted with Judge Grasz, the ABA found a recurring theme: they said his political beliefs would make him unable to be impartial, as a Judge is required to be. They found that he would be unable to separate his role as an advocate from that of a judge. The ABA concluded that Judge Grasz would be able to detach himself from his deeply-held social agenda and political loyalty and be able to judge objectively, with compassion and without bias.
I take no position here concerning these Social Issues, but I merely cite them as examples noted by the ABA. They found that Judge Grasz’s biases include a long record of opposing abortion rights, a history of fighting to stifle LGBT rights, and that he had written a legal opinion that warned about the “grave danger” of Nebraska recognizing same-sex marriages.
While these allegations violate the Standards of Judicial Conduct, they do not amount to breaking the Law. Neither would they get him sent to jail. But they did prevent Judge Grasz from ascending to a higher judicial position. An independent and honorable judiciary is indispensable to Justice in our society. The Code of Conduct for United States Judges states that a judge should maintain and enforce high standards of conduct and should personally observe those standards, so that the integrity and independence of the judiciary may be preserved.
A Judge is a Judicial Officer, charged with enforcing the Law, and maintaining the Temple of Justice.
If a Judge breaks the Law, he cannot be treated like an ordinary criminal. Sometimes it may be necessary to send a Judge to jail. The Judge must be held to a higher standard.
The Judge knows the Law, and what a sacred trust it is to be the Keeper of the Flame of Justice. For a Judge to transgress the Law, it requires a greater Specific Intent than a Layman needs to commit a crime. The Judge knows how important it is in a civil society for everyone to respect and obey the Law. So, the Judge must be held to a higher standard.
A Judge’s punishment must be greater. His violation is more severe that that of the average criminal.
Should the age of the Judge be taken into consideration when a Judge is sentenced?
Should his record as a Judge be a factor in determining an appropriate punishment?
Should the Judge be given any leniency?
Should the Judge’s gender be a factor?
Should a male Judge get a stiffer sentence than a female Judge?
Should the Nature of the Crime be a factor?
If a Judge used his position as a Judge to steal money, should that be a factor?
If people loose their lives or are murdered as a result of the Judge’s wilful violation of the Law, should that be a factor?
The Law is a Spirit. It is a Process. If the Law is perverted then the Temple of Justice is defiled, the Temple must be cleansed. Cleansing the Temple may require that a Judge who violates his Oath of Office be punished.
It is important that Society maintains respect for The Law and The Legal Process. People must believe that Justice is blind, and that they will be treated fairly before The Bar of Justice. The integrity and independence of the judiciary must be preserved at all costs.
One can hardly think of a crime a Judge could commit more egregious than Bribery. For a Judge to use his position for personal gain is unforgivable. For a Judge to extort bribes from the lawyers that appear before him is a crime worthy of going to jail. Judge David Black Daugherty is such a Judge.
He extorted bribes from Attorney Eric Conn. Attorney Conn was found guilty of defrauding the Social Security Administration (SSA) and the people of the United States of about $60 Million. Judge
Daugherty’s decisions in cases in which Conn bribed him obligated the Government to pay more than $550 million in lifetime SSA benefits. Daugherty pleaded guilty to two counts of receiving illegal gratuities.
If a Judge over 80 years old is sentenced to jail, it is possible that Judge will die in jail. Judge Daugherty was sentenced to four years in prison for taking more than $600,000 in bribes.
Judge Daugherty was 81 at the time he was sentenced. He was ordered to pay $93.8 million in Restitution, to be on Supervised Probation for a year after he finishes his prison sentence, and to perform 200 hours of community service.
Daugherty was charged along with Attorney Eric C. Conn. Conn made bribery payments to Daugherty from October 2004 to April 2011. Conn pleaded guilty to one count of theft of government money and one count of payment of gratuities.
He was released on Bail, and placed under house arrest. He was forced to wear a GPS ankle monitor while awaiting sentencing. Sometime in June he removed the GPS monitor and fled the country.
He was arrested on December 2nd in Honduras and returned to the United States. A trial date for the escape charges has been set for February 2018.