Judge Scheindlin is a New York federal trial judge who has taken senior status.* She was handling high profile cases involving New York’s “stop and frisk” practices. She issued an opinion providing remedial relief and an injunction to the folks who were challenging the police department’s practices, and up the case went to the Second Circuit. On Thursday, without ruling on the merits of the appeal, and acting on its own without a request from the appellants, the Second Circuit removed Scheindlin. The Court stated that the trial judge had violated the Code of Conduct and failed in her responsibility to uphold the appearance of impartiality (1) because of her statements to the parties regarding “related” cases and (2) because of interviews she gave to the media. The Second Circuit’s short opinion is here. Liberal legal commentators exploded in outrage. See, for example, here and here. The judge has responded as well. See here.
I’ll give my views later. For now, let me know what you think?
*I don’t know the judge. Nor do I know any of the Circuit judges on the Second Circuit panel who removed the judge.