Recuse yourself! Gutsy PD asks Judge to go

A Virginia Public Defender has filed a recusal motion against JUDGE PAUL 'MAC' PEATROSS seeking to bar him from hearing any cases in which the defendant is represented by the public defender office--quite a gutsy move.

The controversy arose about a year ago when The PD--Jim Hingeley and Albemarle Commonwealth's Attorney James Camblos charged that Peatross, an Albemarle County Circuit Court judge, had engaged in improper conduct, including getting so angry with an attorney that he retaliated against a defendant with a harsher-than-expected sentence. (imagine that! Even the DA admitted it)

In September, the Judicial Inquiry and Review Commission, a seven-member state board, unanimously agreed 'by clear and convincing evidence' that Peatross should be censured or removed from the bench.

Of course the Supreme Court didn't agree. On April 22, it dismissed any notion of censure, and Peatross-- who had recused himself during the investigation-- resumed hearing Circuit Court cases full time.


Anonymous said...

I'm curious why none of the coverage of the VA Supreme Court's dismissal of the censure against Peatross mentions that Peatross contacted the Chief Justice for advice on the pending censure. Peatross told the Justice that the case would never come before the Supreme Court and probably committed a breach of ethics by tainting the proceedings. None of the coverage mentions whether or not the Chief Justice recused himself. I suspect he did not.

Anonymous said...

Judge Paul Peatross' judicial tyranny seems to extend to civil cases as well. I found the following C'ville website that seems to show he can be quite punishing to divorced fathers:

Anonymous said...

Judge Paul Peatross' judical tyranny extends to civil cases as well. His demeanor in the courtroom towards women in divorce cases leaves something to be desired. I have felt on numerous dates in court with judge Peatross that he has been rude, assertive and down right cruel at times toward me. But,in watching his demeanor during other cases he's that way towards women in other divorce cases as well. He even yelled at my attorney who was only trying to present the evidence. Evidence he does not take time to look at or way at any rate. Also he latched onto my case in July, 2005 and at same time there was a criminal case that the Albemarle Commonwealth Attorney's office was handling. Questions remain if he should be hearing my divorce case at all. I wonder if his time on the bench needs some further review by the Judicial Inquiry and Review Commission, Supreme Court and have sommeone set in on his cases to see his demeanor towards parties on both sides. I feel this needs more review.