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All Things Legal in Louisiana
February 09, 2006
Judge Green sentenced
Posted by RPW at 04:04 PM
January 19, 2006
LSC censures Judge Elloie
Today the Louisiana Supreme Court censured Judge Charles Elloie of Criminal District Court, Orleans Parish, for granting ex parte motions to expunge criminal records, without notice to the D.A. and without a contradictory hearing. The Court concluded that Judge Elloie's multiple legal errors in granting these expungements "rises to the level of judicial misconduct." Slip op. at 24.
Posted by RPW at 06:30 PM
April 04, 2005
Bryant Elected to 14th JDC Bench
The Times-Picayune reports that district attorney Rick Bryant won a seat on the 14th JDC Bench in Calcasieu Parish this weekend.
"I hope I enjoy my future as a judge as much as I've enjoyed my past as district attorney. I am looking forward to the challenge, though. It'll be something new and exciting," Bryant said.
Posted by AJR at 11:21 PM
March 30, 2005
Judge doesn't go far for jury duty
Date line: Ville Platte, LA: The San Francisco Chronicle reports:
Judge Thomas Fuselier didn't have far to go to report for jury duty — he just walked across the hall.(via The Legal Reader)
Posted by RPW at 10:18 PM
March 16, 2005
Justice Calogero Favors Judicial Elections
The Advocate reports that Louisiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Pascal Calogero Jr. addressed the primary cause of the Louisiana Organization for Judicial Excellence when he noted that he is partial to Louisiana's current system for electing judges:
"To me, elections and re-elections were growth experiences," he said, adding that his judicial campaigns got him "out into the community" and away from the courthouse for a while.
Posted by AJR at 08:04 AM
February 09, 2005
Candidates for 21st JDC Bench Announce
The Advocated reports that Eric L. Pittman,of Denham Springs, and Scott Sledge, of Hammond, have announced their candidacy for District Court Judge in the 21st Judicial District. The district encompasses Livingston, St. Helena and Tangipahoa parishes. They are running for the judgeship that opened when Jeff Hughes was elected to the state's First Circuit Court of Appeal.
Posted by AJR at 07:56 AM
January 23, 2005
Justice Scalia Speaks at Baton Rouge Holiday Inn
The Advocate reports on a speech made by Justice Scalia to the Knights of Columbus Council 969, which was celebrating its centennial.
Scalia praised "traditional Catholics" who say the rosary, go on pilgrimages, kneel during the Eucharist and "follow religiously the teaching of the pope," adding that "intellect and reason need not be laid aside for religion. It is not irrational to accept the testimony of eyewitnesses who had nothing to gain. There is something wrong with rejecting a priori (deductively) the existence of miracles."
The article notes that the Justice did not charge for his appearance.
Posted by AJR at 09:14 AM
September 30, 2004
24th JDC Judge Alan Green Indicted
Yesterday the feds indicted 24th JDC Judge Alan Green, accusing him of accepting $20,000 in bribes in return for helping Bail Bonds Unlimited and its principal, Louis Marcotte III. Media outlets reporting on the indictment include the Times-Picayune, ABC News, and the Associated Press.
Posted by RPW at 12:54 PM
September 07, 2004
Judge Morey Sear Dies Over Weekend
The Times-Picayune reports that Judge Morey Sear has died at age 75. Judge Sear was appointed by President Ford as district judge in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, serving as chief judge from 1992-1999. He presided over the trial that sent reputed crime boss Carlos Marcello to prison.
Posted by RPW at 12:27 PM
May 31, 2004
Advice from the Judiciary Regarding Summary Judgment Attachments
The following concurrence from Gaspard v. Graves, 03-0844 (La.App. 1 Cir. 2/23/04) was recently published in Around the Bar:
DOWNING, J. agrees and assigns additional reasons.
The question on the test was, who was Socrates? A little girl wrote, "Socrates was a wise man who went around giving other people good advice. They poisoned him."
My good advice to attorneys is to remember that exhibits attached to the memorandum, which goes to the judge, are not in evidence. The original motion for summary judgment, with attached exhibits should be filed into the record and a copy sent to the judge. The original opposing memorandum and a copy of the exhibits goes to the judge and a copy of the opposing memorandum and the original exhibits should be filed in the record.
Although, C.C.P. art. 966 refers to pleadings, depositions, etc. on file, it would help the trial court if you would both list the affidavits attached to the motion and also list in the motion the other evidence in the record upon which you rely and also attach the documents as exhibits. This would also eliminate a lot of guesswork on the part of the court of appeal because we are not always able to determine what the trial court considered in granting or denying the motion for summary judgment.
Because C.C.P. art. 966 uses the term "pleadings" many attorneys seem to think that since the petition is a pleading that they may rely upon the facts alleged in the petition to oppose the motion for summary judgment. The article technically should say, "admissible pleading." The first sentence of C.C.P. art. 967 clearly states that once a motion for summary judgment is made an adverse party may not rest upon the allegations in a pleading. The exception would be facts admitted in the petition or answer. These should be specifically pointed out and, to avoid any doubt, copied and attached to the motion or memorandum. This suggestion applies to other discovery.
"Personal knowledge," under C.C.P. art. 967 does not include hearsay. We are constantly reviewing affidavits from a supervisor who interviewed everyone and who thereafter states he has personal knowledge because of the interviews. That is hearsay and not personal knowledge. The exceptions would be the same exceptions that would apply to hearsay, for instance, if he interviewed the opposing party and the statement was an admission. You should file a motion to strike when the other party files an affidavit with hearsay.
If you have not had time for discovery, file a motion for a continuance. I would file it in the form of an affidavit. Most of the time the attorney simply states at the hearing on the motion for summary judgment that he has not had time for discovery. C.C.P. art. 967 actually states, (i)f it appears from the affidavits of a party ... the court may refuse the application... Why take a chance?
Finally, when is a partial judgment a final judgment? If it totally removes a party from the litigation, it is a final judgment. Also, if there is no just reason for delay, it is a final judgment, after an express determination by the court. What does that mean? The legislature didn't give any definitions or suggestions. The appellate courts have not given a list of just reasons or satisfactory "express determinations." I would suggest that the attorneys ask the trial court to make a finding that an appellate determination of this issue will eliminate this litigation, or is required for this litigation to proceed. But, don't just say those words, explain the why and how, otherwise you will have simply delayed the proceedings to have the court of appeal decide that the reasons were not good enough. And since there are no guidelines, the probability of that happening is fairly good.
In the instant case, all of us regret not being able to decide this case because the exhibits were not in the record. However, since the court of appeal cannot take evidence there was no easy way to resolve this matter.
Posted by AJR at 07:29 PM
March 19, 2003
Gubernatorial Candidates Consider Appointed Judges
The Advocate reports that the Louisiana Organization for Judicial Excellence sponsored a forum for the State's gubernatorial candidates yesterday. "Four of the 12 governor candidates showed up for a luncheon to discuss a plan to use citizens, civic groups and attorneys to nominate judges, with the governor making the final selections." The article reports that the candidates were relatively cold to the idea of appointed judges.
Posted by AJR at 06:56 AM
February 25, 2003
Retired Chief Justice Dixon Dies
The Times reports that retired Louisiana Supreme Court Justice John Dixon passed away on Saturday. Dixon served twenty years on the Court and retired nearly thirteen years ago. "He was the kind of judge everybody would like to have," Shreveport lawyer Don Miller said. "He was honest. He took care of business and did it the way it's supposed to be done."
A memorial service will be held at 3 p.m. Saturday, March 1 at Brown Memorial Chapel on the Centenary College campus.
Posted by AJR at 10:28 AM
February 19, 2003
JDC 18 Judges Refuse Role in Suit Filed by Plaquemine City Court Judge
City Court Judge William Dupont has filed a lawsuit against the City of Plaquemine aimed at restoring $30,000 cut from the city's budget for court employee's salaries, reports The Advocate. Three of the four State District Judges from the 18th JDC have removed themselves from the case, and if the fourth does as well, the Louisiana Supreme Court will appoint someone to hear the case.
Posted by AJR at 08:43 AM
February 13, 2003
Landrieu draws Hispanic heat for Estrada flip-flop
Senator Mary Landrieu is drawing heat from the Hispanic Community for withdrawing of support for Miguel Estrada, a nominee to the federal appellate bench. The Honduran born, Harvard-educated Estrada has been the subject of a Democratic party challenge in his bid to become a member of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the federal circuit. Story Links: Wall St. Journal, Times Picayune, National Review.
Posted by esvenson at 11:24 PM
February 06, 2003
Ex-Judge Bodenheimer Indicted
A federal grand jury charged ex-judge Ronald Bodenheimer and two other men with fixing Al Copeland's child custody case in hopes of gaining a lucrative contract with Copeland's restaurants, reports The Time-Picayune.
Posted by AJR at 07:39 AM
December 27, 2002
Running for Judge can be Expensive
The two canidates running for a seat in the 22nd JDC spent over $600,000, collectively, on their campaigns according to theTimes Picayune. Judge Patrica Hedges, the incumbent, beat challenger Chris Aubert of Covington.
Campaign Finance Reports can be viewed at the State Ethics Board website, when it is back up and running.
Posted by AJR at 08:41 AM
December 26, 2002
New Judges to be Sworn In
"Fourth District Court Judge D. Milton Moore III will take the oath of office for Louisiana's 2nd Circuit Court of Appeal at 4 p.m. today in Courtroom 2 at the Ouachita Parish Courthouse, 301 S. Grand St., Monroe," reports the News Star. Other judges to be sworn in include:
-Jay McCallum in the Third District Court
Posted by AJR at 09:31 AM
December 17, 2002
Death of "Living Legend" Mourned
Senior United States District Judge Richard Putnman, Sr., a JFK appointee, died early Monday in Abbeville. Judge Putnam had been a member of the federal bench for more than forty years and was "perhaps best remembered as the man who ordered the desegregation of Lafayette Parish schools in the turbulent 1960s. Services are planned for 11 a.m. Thursday at St. Mary Magdalen Church in Abbeville.
Posted by AJR at 07:46 AM
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