FEATURED ARTICLES
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
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.
NEWS
May 6, 2011 | By Robert Moran, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The state Supreme Court has removed a Philadelphia judge from a death-penalty case for altering a transcript to remove a disparaging remark she made about the defendant. In a concurring statement with the high court's April 28 order, Justice Max Baer declared the admitted actions of Common Please Court Judge Renee Cardwell Hughes "reprehensible. " Hughes, 55, already is scheduled to retire and is set to become the chief executive officer of the Southeastern Pennsylvania chapter of the American Red Cross on May 16. In a statement issued Friday evening, chapter chairman Michael Coslov said that the high court's decision "in no way will affect Judge Hughes' ability to be a strong, effective leader for the Southeastern Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Red Cross, nor her ability to help those in need.
NEWS
December 2, 1986 | Daily News Wire Services
The U.S. Supreme Court yesterday refused to block the deportation of a Long Island man who has been sentenced to death in the Soviet Union for collaborating with the Nazis during World War II. In another case, a proposed settlement involving Lukens Steel in Chester County, Pa., may nullify the court's agreement to search for racial segregation. Former Attorney General Ramsey Clark had urged the court to review the case of Estonian-born Karl Linnas, one of the first targets of the Justice Department's Office of Special Investigations.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
June 22, 2016 | By Karen Langley, HARRISBURG BUREAU
HARRISBURG - The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Monday declined to reinstate a law that gave groups like the National Rifle Association the right to challenge local gun-control rules in court. Commonwealth Court overturned the law last year on the ground that the legislative process used to make it had violated the state constitution. The gun provision had been added to a bill that addressed the theft of metals. The Supreme Court agreed "that the legislature violated the single-subject rule in an effort to pass an unpopular and irrational bill without being noticed," said Sen. Daylin Leach (D., Montgomery)
NEWS
June 18, 2016 | By Chris Brennan, Staff Writer
Call it a coincidence. Gov. Wolf, who supports merit selection for Pennsylvania's statewide appellate courts, nominated Superior Court Judge Sallie Updyke Mundy, a Republican, to fill a vacancy on the state Supreme Court on Monday. That will likely generate political goodwill for the Democratic governor as he closes in on a state budget with the Republican-controlled legislature. But Wolf appears to have ignored a list of judges, screened by his own blue-ribbon panel and ranked by merit, in making the nomination.
NEWS
May 12, 2016
By Milad Emam For the past six years, Elizabeth Young has been living an American nightmare. Philadelphia police officers showed up at her house and tried to seize her home and car because her son sold $90 worth of marijuana outside her home. Young was never charged with a crime, yet she was soon caught up in Philadelphia's civil-forfeiture machine. With the deck stacked against her, Young went to Philadelphia's criminal justice center and fought to get her property back, arguing that she was an innocent owner because she did not know her son was dealing drugs, having been hospitalized during that time.
NEWS
April 27, 2016 | By Andrew Seidman, TRENTON BUREAU
TRENTON - The state Senate on Monday confirmed Walter Timpone as a justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court, resolving a political standoff that had lasted for most of Gov. Christie's tenure. The Senate voted 33-1, a sign of bipartisanship that stood in stark contrast to the contentious and at times ugly yearslong fight between Christie, a Republican, and Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D., Gloucester) over the ideological composition of the court. With the appointment of Timpone, a Democrat, each justice on the seven-member court has now been confirmed by the Senate, as envisioned by the state constitution.
NEWS
April 18, 2016 | By Michael Matza, Staff Writer
When the U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Monday in the nation's most closely watched immigration lawsuit, Libia Rodriguez will be among the expected thousands of demonstrators at the court's white marble steps. The case, United States v. Texas , could be a life-changer for Rodriguez, 31, an undocumented Mexican immigrant who lives in Coatesville with her husband, also here illegally, and their three U.S.-born children. Depending on the justices' ruling, the couple could put aside their worries of being sent back to Mexico.
NEWS
March 30, 2016
Pennsylvania's Court of Judicial Discipline noted last week that the profane and bigoted emails that finally forced state Supreme Court Justice J. Michael Eakin to resign were marked by "arrogance and the belief that an individual is better than his or her peers. " Ironically, the court pointed this out in the course of a ruling that allowed Eakin to escape a public accounting of his misdeeds and perhaps additional penalties at trial. The unmistakable impression is that Pennsylvania's entire judiciary suffers from an arrogance that prevents it from subjecting its own to the sort of unflinching judgment it imposes on others.
NEWS
March 26, 2016 | By Craig R. McCoy and Mark Fazlollah, STAFF WRITERS
A Pennsylvania judicial tribunal on Thursday found disgraced former Supreme Court Justice J. Michael Eakin guilty of ethical misconduct for his exchange of offensive emails and fined him $50,000, but allowed him to keep his $153,000 annual pension. The six members of the Court of Judicial Discipline unanimously found that Eakin, by exchanging in "insensitive" sexually oriented and otherwise troubling emails on government computers, had undermined public confidence in the judiciary.
NEWS
March 23, 2016
ISSUE | SUPREME COURT Defer to voter dissatisfaction Since virtually the entire country is dissatisfied with the way our federal government is being run and wants change, confirmation hearings for Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia's replacement should be postponed until immediately after the November elections to give voters a chance to express their will and have it acted upon. That said, President Obama acted correctly in making his nomination - it was his duty. Until the elections, Judge Merrick Garland's nomination can be discussed.
NEWS
March 17, 2016 | By Angela Couloumbis, Craig R. McCoy, and Mark Fazlollah, STAFF WRITERS
Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice J. Michael Eakin has resigned his seat on the state's highest court, months after being charged with judicial ethics lapses for his involvement in a pornographic email scandal. He is the second top jurist to step down amid revelations that prosecutors, judges, and law enforcement officials for years exchanged pornographic and otherwise offensive emails, often using state computers. "We have lost one of the finest jurists on the court," Eakin's lawyer, William Costopoulos, said at a news conference Tuesday.
NEWS
March 16, 2016 | By Jan Hefler, Staff Writer
The New Jersey Supreme Court has reprimanded Thomas J. Scattergood, a former municipal judge who served in various Burlington County towns, for downgrading traffic tickets for acquaintances instead of recusing himself, and for making sexist and undignified remarks at several court hearings. The court also barred Scattergood from holding future judicial office, saying in a 30-page presentment last week that his conduct had "undermined the public's confidence . . . in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary.
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