Judges are supposed to be models of decorum. They have a code of ethics that is very strict. Most take that seriously, but one judge in Alabama allegedly did not.
A Mobile County Alabama judge James T. Patterson was recently suspended after an ethics complaint was filed against him. The complaint alleges multiple transgressions that occurred over several years.
One complaint involved an incident in 2019 when Patterson allegedly asked a jury pool that included an Asian American if everyone spoke “Engrish.” Judge Patterson has since characterized what he said as a “stupid, stupid joke.”
The complaint additionally details Judge Patterson’s alleged statements to defendants, telling them they will be brutally sexually assaulted in jail. Specifically, the complaint says the judge told several defendants they would be “butt raped in the penitentiary.”
Judge Patterson has also allegedly referred to fellow Republican, Governor Kay Ivey, who is 77 years old, as “Governor Memaw.” Patterson apologized to Ivey in a letter in which he said his “Gov. MeMaw” remark “was a poor attempt at humor in the midst of this Covid-19 mess.” He allegedly continued using the term, however, when referring to Governor Ivey in discussions with lawyers, investigators found.
An assistant prosecutor in the county, as well as Patterson’s former court reporter, have spoken out against him. “In court, Judge Patterson has used the following words: ‘f*ck,’ ‘sh*t,’ ‘bast*ard,’ ‘a*s,’ and ‘a*shole,” the complaint said. “According to his former court reporter, Judge Patterson used the word ‘a*s’ all the time in court as if it was his favorite word.”
The Judicial Inquiry Commission charged Patterson with inappropriate demeanor and temperament and abuse of judicial authority. He could potentially be removed from office. Patterson, however, has posted on Facebook, “[t]he liberals call everyone they disagree with a racist nowadays,” adding “I am nothing of the kind.”
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This type of conduct is certainly unbecoming of a judge. Courts are one of the last places we can go to see real decorum and traditional rules still followed. But liberals are more than ready to denounce any behavior by a Republic that they think should be “canceled.” What do you think of the things this judge said? Is that type of “joke” okay from a judge in a courtroom?