Michigan Judge Removed From Office For Lying Under Oath

bildegavel2The Michigan Supreme Court voted yesterday 5-2 to remove Wayne Family Circuit Judge Deborah Ross Adams from office for lying under oath and other violations of judicial ethics. In removing Adams, the court found that a 180-day suspension recommended by the Judicial Tenure Commission was manifestly too low for a judge lying under oath.

The Michigan Judicial Tenure Commission charged Adams with professional misconduct in 2012. She was accused of lying to Oakland County Circuit Judge Mary Ellen Brennan about repeatedly calling her office concerning her divorce from former Detroit Deputy Mayor Anthony Adams. She then allegedly forged her lawyer’s name to a court document. The commission also accused Ross Adams of lying when it confronted her about both incidents.

The Commission clearly viewed the subject of the lie — making calls to chambers — had bearing on the punishment. It reminds me of the defense of Bill Clinton who suggested that lying under oath about an affair is different from lying about something related to his office. I testified in the impeachment hearings against such a relativistic interpretation.

Do you believe that removal was appropriate in this case?


36 thoughts on “Michigan Judge Removed From Office For Lying Under Oath”

  1. Mike Spindell,

    Thank you for taking the time to make your comments.

    I always seem to agree with most all of them as with the above statements.

    I was getting ready to comment something along the same lines so I’ll just add it here.

    Like with the magician’s slide of hand tricks many Americans, myself included, we focused on the wrong things.

    We heard about Bill C’s BJ & ignored the more important things that were happening.

    And now we know Newt Gingrich was also having BJ problems & he like Clinton were likely blackmailed into actions they may have not otherwise taken.

    A few of the highlights are such as the Whitewater investigation. All the govt records were claimed to have been in the Murrah Federal Building when it was blown.

    Urban myth, I don’t know, but there are many unanswered questions about OKC, the SPLC connection, AG Holder was there in the aftermath & then I think there are at least 7 or 8 video tapes showing who got out of the Ryder truck that morning that the govt still hasn’t released.

    Skipping over other important issues back towards the end of the 90’s let us not forget some key parts of the main coup, the financial coup.

    I’ll post the 1st link here & I’ll assume WP is still acting up & post the 2nd in a follow up post.

    **President Bill Clinton publicly declared “the Glass–Steagall law is no longer appropriate.” **


  2. Mike, Clinton was promoted by tptb for precisely the reasons you give as to why is was not a good president. GHWB had tried to get those things done but failed. Only a Democrat could twist enough arms to make it happen. So he did.

  3. “It reminds me of the defense of Bill Clinton who suggested that lying under oath about an affair is different from lying about something related to his office. I testified in the impeachment hearings against such a relativistic interpretation.”

    It might remind Professor Turley about Bill Clinton, but it is by no means a similar situation. From my perspective Bill Clinton was not a good President.
    His policies and philosophies were more characteristic of a Republican moderate than they were of a Democratic President. Even with the political philosophy of a Republican moderate he was willing to compromise with more extreme elements of that party. NAFTA and CAFTA which with bi-partisan support were tantamount to treason. Welfare Reform was phony and I know because at that point I worked at the highest levels in NYC’s Welfare System and was privy to the discussions of how that program was implemented and of its lack of success. His acquiescence to the elimination of Smoot-Harley (also bi-partisan) laid the groundwork for our current economic malaise, the further erosion of the middle-class and the increasing poverty in our country.

    With all of that, the impeachment and the Whitewater investigation that preceded it, represented a detailed plot to both undermine the legitimacy of his Presidency and to remove someone elected by the citizens of this country. The impeachment was aided and abetted by a SCOTUS that allowed the subpoena of a sitting President in a civil lawsuit, which in itself is a policy that invites mischief. As to his “lie” to the effect that “I didn’t have sex with that woman” it wasn’t a lie in the minds of 65% of American Males (established by polling” who consider that “having sex” means strictly intercourse). This fallacy about sexuality was well entrenched before Mr. Clinton ever took office.
    Should he have known better, possibly, but I have known many well-educated sophisticated males who believe the same and indeed used it to justify their own infidelities. As a social worker, psychotherapist and social service executive, with specific training in sexuality, the notion that intercourse alone constitutes sex was a very important concept to deal with and refute. STD’s for instance can be transmitted via oral sex.

    Beyond that though Mr. Fitzgerald, the Special Prosecutor who helped engineer this attempted coup, is a disgrace to the legal profession. He was certainly over zealous in a partisan manner, destroyed the lives of the McDonald’s wrongly and issued a report that was more pornography than indictment. The impeachment had nothing to do with the integrity of the Office of the Presidency and everything to do with a coups against the U.S. Government. We now see that the end results of that coup were successful. It led the way for PNAC in 1998, the “selection” of G.W. Bush, two wars a broken economy and a President who “learned” from that Coup the need to pacify the forces that really run this country.

  4. Raff,

    That’s a separate proceeding…. She’ll still be entitled to her pension from the lower court which is about 100k per year plus benefits…. If I recall she was appointed to the circuit court in 96 or 97…. Not bad for a lying SOS….

  5. I agree with Mespo that the forgery is significant enough to justify the removal from the bench. I would think that a disbarment is also in her future. I hope so.

  6. No, I don’t believe removal of President Clinton from Office was justified. Neither did most Americans. The Repubs spent tens of millions, made their hay, and we got W Bush as the consequence. As for the Judge, yes can her ass.

  7. Mesopo,

    The lying occurred under oath at the Judicial Tenure Commission which is the regulatory agency for Judges… She should have accepted the 180 days…under suspension…

  8. From my experience and observation I believe that embellishing things with outright exaggeration, – and then a barrage of falsehoods built one on another is the stock and trade of criminal and divorce lawyers. A superior officer of the court -a Judge – must enjoy at least as much latitude. She is deserving I would suspect, of a Judicial Community Outstanding Service Award for having turned the tables on people like that……#( :-)-{

  9. I think that if all she did was to give “the least dishonest answers” to questions, then the matter should be treated as a mere prank – if indeed it should be considered at all.

  10. WordPress: You missed this one– or do you only censor single words:

    She was accused of lying Oakland County Circuit Judge Mary Ellen Brennan about repeatedly calling her office concerning her divorce from former Detroit Deputy Mayor Anthony Adams.

    Was she accused of “lying to..”?

  11. An unqualified YES… She should have been removed… She was a lower court judge for many years… So she will still collect retirement from that position ….which is financed by the bankrupt city of Detriot….

  12. Paul,

    Michael one of the dissents is originally from Detriot… Bridgett is fom the same area and taught law at UM… When Hathaway stepped down because of the financial scandal…. Snyder appointed a republican supporter in her place… The decision would have still been the same but 4/3 as opposed to 5/2…..unless Hathaway requested that she not participate because she had been on the same court….

    Ross is a lying SOS…. You didn’t inconvince her court… But if you were inconvienced… TS…. She was and is the epitimay of bad judges….

    Here’s the kicker… Even though she has been removed…. Her only recourse is with the same panel that removed her to start with…. But that’s ok… She can still run for reelection…. And probably still win….

    Bad judges in Michigan are the RULE rather than the exception…..

    Not that I know anything….

    Just look what the 6th Circuit is made up of…. And the decisions it’s rendered…..

  13. Absolutely appropriate. I just wonder what the 2 that voted against this thought?

  14. I say we offer a good package deal to Canada. You take Illinois and Michigan and we’ll give you free tourism[lodging] in Florida and California.

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