Friday, February 02, 2007

Judicial Abuse

Judges have more power to abuse more people and decide more financial issues than did Kings in Medieval times.

Kings have no oversight, and neither do modern judges in America. They can do as they please. We do not have a representative government in America if Judges are not accountable for their actions.

If a doctor cuts off the wrong leg on a patient he or she could face criminal and civil penalties.

If a citizens steals a candy bar from a candy store. It could technically land the citizen in jail.

Judge do the equivalent of cutting off massive amounts of legs, poking out eyes, and causing mass mayhem.

I would have rather had Rockville Superior Court Judge Jonathan Kaplan use a dirty saw and cut off my leg without anesthesia than to have what he did to me in retaliation for having him removed for bias in civil cases, for what I wrote in newspapers critical of police and the Connecticut Judiciary, for wanting to sue the Connecticut State Police for violating my civil rights, and for proposing legislation to elected officials such as fairness in the courts and Civilian Oversight of Police. If Kaplan is not the "poster boy" for impeachment, I do not know of a judge that is.

I ask Connecticut Governor Rell if she is part of the solution or part of the problem. Click Here for my email to her.

Should citizens that are victims of official corruption have their bogus criminal records expunged and should they be compensated? Click Here for more.

Click Here for a post on Judicial Impeachment from The Get Justice Coalition blog. Justices aren't elected yet they decide what elected officials pass in legislation that can be cut out. Justices also decide what laws on the books they feel like enforcing. Unofficial policies can be instituted by justices without any laws being passed. Without change these judges are legislating from the bench. That is just plain wrong.

Click Here for a post on how former Connecticut Chief Justice William J. Sullivan defiles the Black Robe, and disgraces his "Black Robe Mafia".

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Hartford Connecticut Police Officer Robert Lawlor aka "The Teflon Badge"

Should a White Police Officer be able to get away with posting his picture in front of an American Flag and a Police Officer's badge on a website, calling himself, "An American Patriot" asking for donations after he shot a young Black man in the back to death. Lawlor has wounded and/or killed at least one other man of color.

Former White Connecticut Police Officer Scott Smith chased down an African American suspect, stood on his back, placed his pistol near his boot, and fired a round through the suspects back executing him. Prosecutors routinely botch cases in Connecticut to save police and other officials from facing justice as their cases are thrown out on appeal. Smith got a one year suspended sentence on appeal for murder, a Racist Execution!

Genocide carries no penalty in Connecticut and probably other States following Connecticut's lead.

Click Here for more on the Lawlor story and about the torturing of suspects by police.

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From Joel Jacobsen's "Judging Crimes" blog:

« 179. Intellectual dishonesty watch | Main | 177. Concentration »

178. Connecticut secrets

Connecticut selects its judges on a modified federal model, with nomination by the governor and actual appointment by the general assembly. Last spring, 67-year-old Chief Justice William J. Sullivan decided to retire ("take senior status" - meaning, I gather, that he can continue to work as much as he wants while drawing his pension - who wouldn't take it, if he or she could?).

The governor appointed Associate Justice Peter T. Zarella to replace Sullivan. Zarella, as it happens, had joined in an opinion written by Sullivan declaring that the general assembly, being a bunch of morons elected by unwashed proles, had no right to know what one-third of the government was getting up to. Sullivan used slightly fancier language, but the basic point was that the people of Connecticut have no right to know what the judiciary is doing.

Although Sullivan's opinion pretended to be merely implementing the general assembly's will - that is, engaging in statutory construction - Sullivan himself knew that the general assembly would be irritated by the opinion's assault on the basic premise of democracy, an informed electorate, without which no government (or branch of government) can truly be said to be exercising just powers derived from the consent of the governed.

It occurred to Sullivan that, if the general assembly knew Zarella's views on the subject, it might be hostile to his nomination to be chief justice. So Sullivan delayed the release of the opinion for no other reason than to influence the general assembly's actions. In effect, he lied to the general assembly, but it was a lie of omission rather than commission - he just took steps to prevent the assembly from learning what it would be getting with a Chief Justice Zarella. (See post 176 and post 7.)

The Connecticut Supreme Court's senior justice filed a complaint with the Connecticut Judicial Review Council, which apparently has no website and which is described here as "ultra secretive." At the hearing on the complaint, it's reported, a member of the council named G. Kenneth Bernard - Edward Abbey once made a pointed remark about people who use that first initial - told the senior judge, "I'm failing to see what your letter did to assist the public, other than to quash Justice Zarella's opportunity to become chief justice." After all, how does it benefit the public to know their former chief justice was a deceitful political operator entirely bereft of ethical sense?

G. Kenneth was complaining about a justice lifting the veil of secrecy from another justice's act of secreting a decision about judicial secrecy.

But the story gets riper. The general assembly's judicial committee decided they wanted to know what Sullivan thought he was doing, trying to influence their deliberations in that way. So they subpoenaed Sullivan to testify. And Sullivan got one of his former subordinates to rule - no joke - that it violated the separation of powers for the legislative branch to question a judicial officer about his interference in the legislative process. (Here's an opinion on motions for rehearing, explaining that the integrity of the legislative process is just not important enough to justify a subpoena against a god.)

It's the sort of decision that you read with the faint hope that at some point the judge will admit he's just joking. No one could actually believe that the legislature is powerless to investigate attempts to improperly influence it, could he? Imagine a member of the assembly telling a judge that, as a legislative officer, he's beyond the court's subpoena power.

It's hard to imagine a clearer example of what judges mean when they use the phrase "separation of powers." They mean: the judiciary is supreme. Any act by the other branches that inconveniences judges is a violation of the separation of powers. But nothing judges do is ever a violation of separation of powers. It's hardly necessary to point out that the judge relied almost exclusively on prior decisions of the Connecticut Supreme Court to define that court's immunity from democratic scrutiny. Because, of course, there's no difference between the state Constitution and the opinions of the state Supreme Court, except that in case of conflict the latter take precedence over the former.

Oh, and Senior Justice Sullivan has also reportedly taken the position that the Judicial Review Council has no authority to investigate, and much less discipline, him. You see, he's a member of the Supreme Court. Need anything else be said?

Some good may come out of the pathetic fiasco. There is some political pressure for increased openness in Connecticut's courts, though naturally the judges who prefer the autonomy that comes with secrecy are opposed to anything that smacks of letting people know what their government is doing on their behalf. No doubt, the judges are lining up toadying lawyers to confirm that, yes, indeed, every trial would be like O.J.'s if judges didn't have the flexibility to do things that would shame them if publicized.

(Perhaps ironically, back in 2003 Sullivan was reported to be opposed to the routine sealing of certain cases. It's all a question of whose dirty linen would be aired, I guess.)

Vincent Michael Valvo, editor of the Hartford Business Journal and president of the Connecticut Council on Freedom of Information, wrote an excellent op-ed in the Hartford Courant about the half-hearted reforms endorsed by a governor's commission. The commission's biggest failure? Rule-making authority:

Connecticut's Constitution says very plainly that the "powers and jurisdiction of [the] courts shall be defined by law." This is the same language as in the federal Constitution. But on the federal level, it's clear what that means: Congress holds the authority to make the rules and procedures of the court.

In Connecticut, though, the courts have been slowly trying to change that perception, issuing rulings over the past three decades that, though just shy of ever saying it outright, have been aggregating power to the judicial branch that rightly belongs to the legislature. In Connecticut, the court thinks it - and only it - makes the rules. And so, apparently, does the Governor's Commission on Judicial Reform.

The commission never considered issuing a statement that the court has gone too far in absorbing rule-making power.

Rules of procedure are, by definition, forward-looking, of general application. Adjudication is, by its nature, backward-looking and specific as between litigants. The former is the province of the legislative branch, the latter is the province of the judiciary. The distinction is not difficult.

But Connecticut's judiciary isn't alone in declaring that the enacting of forward-looking rules of general application is - exclusively - a judicial prerogative, when the rules in question affect the courts. I think most state courts take that position. You see, it's not a separation of powers problem when it's done by the courts. That distinction's pretty simple, too.

Posted on Saturday, October 7, 2006 at 01:16PM by Registered CommenterJoel Jacobsen in , , , |

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

From :
Sent : Friday, February 2, 2007 2:16 PM
To :,,,,,,
Subject : Graziani Lies Under Oath to Judicial Committee

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On January 29, 2007 Edward Graziani appeared before the judicial committee for reappointment as judge to the superior court. Graziani testified under oath to the following:

1. That he was not involved with any restraining orders issued against Christopher Kennedy.

FACT: A review of Rockville Family Case Docket FA04-0083947 Putman V. Kennedy of a restraining ordered issued against Christopher Kennedy (viewable online) shows Graziani's name as the ordering judge for three actions on two separate court dates. A review of the court file also shows Grazaini as the judge postponing a hearing in this case past the 14 day period as required by statute, CGA 46b-15.
The significance of this Restraining order is there were no allegations of abuse, no children listed yet Kennedy's two minor daughters were taken from there father based on Kennedy's complaint against Judge Kaplan. (After three years the court has entered the official ruling into the case file on January 14, 2007.)

FACT: When Graziani delayed the hearing he also approved the order that included the mother, Leanna Putman due to a computer error. Graziani knew the order was false and knew Judges Kaplan and Klaczak were abusing two little girls in retaliation for a complaint against a judge. The significance of this order is that judge Kaplan, knowing the orders were false and included the mother in error, drove these documents to Hartford Criminal Court and personally handed them to the prosecutor with the instructions that they to be put into an arrest warrant affidavit against Christopher Kennedy. Kennedy was then arrested based on that affidavit and the restraining order stating he was restrained from Leanna Putman. Also included in that Arrest warrant was the statement that Kennedy was held in contempt by judge Graziani. Graziani failed to inform the court that the Contempt ruling was overturned at appeal

2. When asked by Senator MacDonald if he recused (disqualify) himself from the Kennedy case, Graziani testified that he was no longer involved and there was no need to.

FACT: In Rockville case FA01-0075660, Kennedy v. Kennedy, A motion to recuse judge Graziani was filed after the judge granted sole custody to the mother and reduced the father's time from 50% to 14 % effectively removing him from his children's lives. The mother at the time was waiting trial at Rockville Court for stabbing the father and multiple violations of a Protective order. Graziani's ruling went against a three month family study, family evaluation report by the court, the Family counselor the children's school and the children's wishes. Every professional assessment was that granting the mother sole custody would harm the children. There was no testimony or evidence that the children would benefit from sole custody. Kennedy was denied a continuance to seek counsel at the hearing. All motions filed by Kennedy were postponed and ignored at the hearing.
The motion for recusal was denied despite Graziani's brother being Kennedy's State Rep. and him having a prior relationship with the mother's attorney and law firm.

FACT: A complaint was filed with the judicial review council and a second motion to recuse this judge was filed as he continued to deny Kennedy access, medication and insurance for his children, against Graziani's own court orders. Graziani never addressed the complaint as required and ignored the motion for recusal as he continue to preside over this family case, including his rulings on the retraining order. That motion for recusal has never been heard

3. That Graziani was moved to juvenile court and had no further dealings with the Kennedy case.

FACT: After Kennedy filed a complaint against judge Graziani and judge Kaplan, Judges Kaplan, Graziani and Klaczak issued two restraining orders against Kennedy taking away his children, contacted Prosecutors in Hartford, Enfield and Rockville to have Kennedy arrested and prosecuted in three criminal cases, issued two protective orders to terminate all contact with Kennedy and his children and Arrested Kennedy's 15 year old son. Kennedy's son was then processed through Rockville Juvenile court where judge Graziani presided.

4. That Chris Kennedy had also filed complaints Judge Patricia Swords at Rockville court but Graziani is not involved or has no knowledge of the Kennedy matter.

FACT: Kennedy did file two complaints with the Judicial Review Council against judge Patricia Swords of Rockville family court for refusing to swear in witnesses, ignoring every motions Kennedy has filed for the past year and for enforcing a criminal protective order from GA-19 a year after it was expunged from Kennedy's record. (Kennedy has defeated every allegation and criminal action brought by Judge Kaplan, Graziani and Klaczak, his record has been expunged and is completely cleared.) Swords continues to use this protective order as grounds to deprive Kennedy of his children today. Judge Sword ordered both complaints filed by Kennedy to be sealed from the public and added to his family court folder. Swords stated on the record that she has never spoken to another judge about the Kennedy case.
The only way Judge Edward Graziani could have know about the complaint against judge Swords is if he personally went through Kennedy's Family court file and opened the sealed documents in that case. Complaints to the JRC are not public knowledge. The significance is that Graziani lied about his involvement in the Kennedy case, that he is still active behind the scenes, and at a time when the State declares the courts to be transparent and open, Rockville court is sealing judicial complaints, adding them to court folders and blacklisting parties who complain about a judge. Graziani claims to have nothing to do with the Kennedy case, he is not a judge in this case yet he is access sealed records in the family case.

Graziani is violating the public trust by perjuring himself before the judicial committee. Legislators will have to decide whether to protect this judge or protect the citizens and children of Connecticut.

Chris Kennedy
The Connecticut Civil Rights Council

Friday, February 02, 2007 11:46:00 AM  

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