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Old 06-10-2005, 05:39 AM
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Default Juvenile judge censured by Supreme Court

Juvenile judge censured by Supreme Court
Associated Press

A juvenile court judge in East Baton Rouge Parish, La., has been publicly censured by the Louisiana Supreme Court but the justices rejected a recommendation to suspend her without pay for 60 days.
On a 6-to-1 vote, the high court took the action for Judge Pamela Taylor Johnson's refusal to conduct hearings for ten juveniles who would have been affected by the closing of a drug treatment center she helped open. The treatment center is no longer in existence.
The treatment center was set up in 1999 with more than 500-thousand dollars in state and federal grants, which also were used to establish a juvenile drug court. That court also has been disbanded.
The dispute over the hearings occurred after the Supreme Court appointed a retired Orleans Parish juvenile court judge, Salvadore Mule, to oversee the administrative functions of the East Baton Rouge Parish Juvenile Court.
The Louisiana Judiciary Commission, which investigates complaints of judicial misconduct, also accused Johnson of failing to timely sign judgments in about 35 child support cases and generally failing to cooperate with Mule. The high court dismissed those two charges, saying there was not enough evidence to support them. But, the court said Johnson's refusal to conduct the hearings as requested by Mule violated the Code of Judicial Conduct.
In a dissent, Justice Jeffrey Victory said all three charges against Johnson were proven. Victory backed the Judiciary Commission's recommendation for a 60-day suspension.
Johnson assumed the juvenile court bench on January 1st, 1995, to fill a partial term. She won six-year terms during elections in 1996 and 2002.
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