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NEWS
April 20, 2000 | By Rich Henson, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The state Supreme Court has barred a Montgomery County judge from hearing the custody dispute involving a mother who fled the country with her two children and the millionaire father who searched the world to bring them home. The high court issued the order last week in response to a petition filed on behalf of the mother, Ellen Dever, by her attorneys, Richard A. Sprague and William H. Lamb. The justices, who did not state a reason for removing Judge Rhonda Lee Daniele, also barred any other Montgomery County judges from the case.
NEWS
September 7, 1995 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A federal judge has ordered a new trial for a man serving life for a notorious robbery and murder 24 years ago, ruling that the city prosecutor purposely excluded African Americans from the jury that convicted him. In a one-paragraph order Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Marvin Katz wrote that the District Attorney's Office must retry Edward Sistrunk within 90 days or set him free. Donna Zucker, chief of the district attorney's federal appeals unit, said Katz's ruling would be appealed to the Third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
NEWS
October 28, 2014 | By Jeff Gammage, Inquirer Staff Writer
Colleagues say Robert Byer practices law with the precision of a diamond-cutter: Disciplined, dispassionate, and led by keen intelligence. "Beyond brilliant," said his college roommate, Philadelphia lawyer Jeffrey Pasek. An appellate expert, Oxford scholar, and former Commonwealth Court judge, lawyer for Ford Motor Co., Columbia Pictures, and Travelers Insurance, he has now been appointed special counsel to the fractured and fractious Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Byer, 62, is the court's attorney, its legal representative and adviser at a chaotic moment when the justices have suspended one of their own, Seamus McCaffery, in an evolving scandal over e-mailed pornography.
NEWS
October 27, 2014 | By Jeremy Roebuck, Craig R. McCoy and Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Staff Writers
Seamus P. McCaffery, the embattled Pennsylvania Supreme Court justice caught up in the pornographic e-mail scandal, has resigned from the high court. McCaffery, 64, notified friends and associates Monday. He also sent a two-paragraph letter to Gov. Corbett announcing his intention to retire after 20 years as a judge. "It has all been a great honor and privilege, which I deeply cherish," it said. His resignation followed a weekend of intense and secret negotiations in which McCaffery, a former Philadelphia police officer and municipal court judge, was able to guarantee his government pensions and agreed not to seek another elective office, court sources said.
NEWS
June 28, 2011 | By Jesse J. Holland, Associated Press
WASHINGTON - States cannot ban the sale or rental of ultraviolent video games to children, the Supreme Court ruled, 7-2, Monday, rejecting such limits as a violation of young people's First Amendment rights and leaving it to parents and the multibillion-dollar gaming industry to decide what children can buy. The high court threw out California's 2005 law covering games sold or rented to those under 18, calling it an unconstitutional violation of...
NEWS
November 10, 2001 | By Barbara Boyer INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court handed convicted murderer and onetime counterculture guru Ira Einhorn a legal defeat yesterday when justices denied, without comment, his request that the high court seize control of his legal odyssey. The decision clears the way for Einhorn, who was convicted in absentia in 1993, to seek a new trial in Common Pleas Court. On Wednesday, Common Pleas Court Judge D. Webster Keogh is scheduled to rule on Einhorn's request for a new trial in the 1977 death of his onetime girlfriend Holly Maddux.
NEWS
November 18, 1986 | Daily News Wire Services
The Supreme Court yesterday agreed to examine the rights of hundreds of thousands of Japanese-Americans forced into mass detention camps during World War II. The case is the first of a series now pending in which Japanese-Americans seek monetary damages for the internment, which was ordered by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and defended as a military necessity. Specifically, the high court agreed to review a request by the Reagan administration to block a 1983 lawsuit from coming to trial in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
NEWS
May 27, 2009 | By Jim Newton
Is empathy a desirable quality in a U.S. Supreme Court justice? President Obama said he was searching for it. But as a qualification for a jurist, it gives conservatives the willies and can produce mixed results. We expect judges to resist empathy and impose the law evenhandedly. We are appropriately outraged when a judge goes easy on a defendant with whom he identifies - the suburban white kid, say, who gets community service, whereas his urban black counterpart goes off to jail.
NEWS
June 25, 2000 | By Chris Mondics, INQUIRER WASHINGTON BUREAU
Anyone seeking evidence of the potential impact of the presidential race on the Supreme Court and its handling of controversial social and religious issues need look no further than its decision Monday banning student-led prayers at public school sporting events. The court split along what have become predictable lines, with Justices Sandra Day O'Connor and Anthony Kennedy, two conservative swing votes, joining the court's liberal-to-moderate bloc in voting to ban the prayers. But court experts say that with as many as four justices approaching the age at which they may step down, the next president has the potential to reshape the court for years to come.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
October 28, 2014 | By Jeff Gammage, Inquirer Staff Writer
Colleagues say Robert Byer practices law with the precision of a diamond-cutter: Disciplined, dispassionate, and led by keen intelligence. "Beyond brilliant," said his college roommate, Philadelphia lawyer Jeffrey Pasek. An appellate expert, Oxford scholar, and former Commonwealth Court judge, lawyer for Ford Motor Co., Columbia Pictures, and Travelers Insurance, he has now been appointed special counsel to the fractured and fractious Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Byer, 62, is the court's attorney, its legal representative and adviser at a chaotic moment when the justices have suspended one of their own, Seamus McCaffery, in an evolving scandal over e-mailed pornography.
NEWS
October 28, 2014 | By Chris Mondics, Inquirer Staff Writer
After weeks of turmoil and recrimination, Monday's announcement that Seamus McCaffery would step down from the Pennsylvania Supreme Court is an important move toward restoring the credibility of a court badly shaken by internal intrigue and allegations of impropriety. That is the view of many lawyers who practice before the court, who say further infighting would have severely hampered the court's ability to function. Nancy Winkelman, a partner at Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis L.L.P.
NEWS
October 27, 2014 | By Jeremy Roebuck, Craig R. McCoy and Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Staff Writers
Seamus P. McCaffery, the embattled Pennsylvania Supreme Court justice caught up in the pornographic e-mail scandal, has resigned from the high court. McCaffery, 64, notified friends and associates Monday. He also sent a two-paragraph letter to Gov. Corbett announcing his intention to retire after 20 years as a judge. "It has all been a great honor and privilege, which I deeply cherish," it said. His resignation followed a weekend of intense and secret negotiations in which McCaffery, a former Philadelphia police officer and municipal court judge, was able to guarantee his government pensions and agreed not to seek another elective office, court sources said.
NEWS
October 22, 2014 | BY CHRIS BRENNAN, Daily News Staff Writer brennac@phillynews.com, 215-854-5973
IT ALL FINALLY got to be too much for the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, which yesterday suspended Justice Seamus McCaffery. The other justices tried to stay out of McCaffery's long-running feud with Chief Justice Ron Castille, who must step down at the end of this year because he has reached age 70. The thinking before: Ride it out and the state's highest court will settle down once Castille retires. The thinking now: There is a "compelling and immediate need to protect and preserve the integrity" of the court, three of the seven justices declared in an order.
NEWS
October 22, 2014 | Inquirer Editorial Board
In suspending Justice Seamus McCaffery on Monday and ordering the state's Judicial Conduct Board to conduct an expedited review of allegations against him, his fellow justices took a necessary first step toward restoring a semblance of dignity to the state's highest court. Recent events have made it excruciatingly clear that the Supreme Court is in a state of disarray. With Justice J. Michael Eakin stopping just short of accusing McCaffery of blackmail in an expanding controversy over pornographic messages, the court had little choice but to act quickly to address this corrosive scandal.
NEWS
October 18, 2014 | By Jeremy Roebuck and Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Staff Writers
Breaking weeks of silence, Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Seamus P. McCaffery apologized Thursday for sending sexually explicit e-mails to state employees, then blasted the high court rival he said used the "cooked-up controversy" to carry out a "vindictive pattern of attacks" against him. In a statement, the 64-year-old jurist unloaded on Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille for exposing the racy correspondence, which McCaffery called private and...
NEWS
October 16, 2014
SO NOW WE HAVE a new battle on the state's highest court, this one part of an ongoing fight from the streets of Philadelphia. Former Philly district attorney, Supreme Court Chief Justice Ron Castille, and former Philly cop and "Eagles Court" judge, Supreme Court Justice Seamus McCaffery, have expanded their longtime animus over style, clout and general manliness to, well, porn. Castille, who isn't talking, is said to be considering what if any action to recommend regarding the embarrassment of McCaffery, who isn't talking, getting caught in the headline-grabbing story of state officials sharing porn emails.
NEWS
October 8, 2014 | By Michaelle Bond and Jessica Parks, Inquirer Staff Writers
Gay-rights advocates in Pennsylvania and throughout the country say they are encouraged by the U.S. Supreme Court's decision Monday not to take on five pending same-sex marriage appeals. The denial effectively legalized same-sex marriage in five states - Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin - and cleared the way for legalization in six others. Some advocates in the Philadelphia area viewed the court's action as a sign that nationwide legalization is just a matter of time.
NEWS
September 26, 2014 | By Craig R. McCoy and Mark Fazlollah, Inquirer Staff Writers
Two Philadelphia Municipal Court judges were suspended Wednesday by the state Supreme Court, hours after a fellow judge admitted in a guilty plea that he reached out to them in an attempt to fix cases. The judges, Dawn Segal and Joseph O'Neill, will be suspended from hearing cases while their conduct is examined by the state's Judicial Conduct Board, said state Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille. Castille said the high court ordered the suspensions, with pay, after former Municipal Court Judge Joseph C. Waters Jr. pleaded guilty to corruption charges.
NEWS
September 12, 2014 | BY PATRICIA MADEJ, Daily News Staff Writer madejp@phillynews.com, 215-854-5938
THE STATE Supreme Court is deciding whether Pennsylvania will add pen and paper to its mainly electronic voting system. Accuracies and constitutionality issues concerning the current voting system in most of the state were brought in front of the high court yesterday in City Hall. The appeal comes from a 2006 case that argued that votes cast using direct recording electronic machines, or DREs, leave opportunity for tampering because they don't create a physical record of a voter's choice, but rather store electronic records that can be printed later.
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