Ohio Judge Reprimanded After Berating Jurors For Acquitting Criminal Defendant

Judge_Amy_Salerno_2005Judge Amy Salerno of Franklin County, Ohio has been reprimand for a serious breach of judicial ethics. Salerno lashed out at jurors after they acquitted a defendant and said that it was a “slam dunk” case. Salerno was ranked as the worst judge in the Columbus Bar Association survey in 2007, 2009, 2011, and 2013. She appears intent on continuing her ignoble distinction. We previously discussed the case.

The case itself did not seem a likely choice for such a departure from basic rules of judicial decorum. It was a simply misdemeanor assault case in 2013. Salerno called in the jurors after the not guilty verdict and told them that they blew it and disclosed that the defendant was facing charges in another criminal case.

That is an obvious violation of Judicial Conduct Rule 1.2 requiring a judge to respect and comply with the law and to act at all times in a manner that promotes public confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the  judiciary). It was also found to violate Judicial Conduct Rule 2.8(C) prohibiting a judge from commending or criticizing jurors for their verdict other than in a court order or opinion in a proceeding. These violations were found to be aggravated by what the Bar found was how Salerno’s conduct  adversely affected several jurors, who were quite upset by the judge’s criticism which “subjected the entire Ohio judicial system to widespread criticism and ridicule after her remarks received nationwide media coverage. See BCGD Proc.Reg. 10(B)(1)(h).” A juror described her demeanor as “nasty” and said that she went home and cried after the criticism.

Salerno issued a statement that noted that she accepted and even asked for the reprimand: “Everyone has said something that they later regretted. Upon reflection, I publicly acknowledged my mistake and have apologized for what was said. It was intemperate. I punished myself by requesting a public reprimand from the Supreme Court. I agreed to and accepted a public reprimand from the Supreme Court of Ohio. I have learned from this experience and it will never happen again.”

Salerno is a former former Republican member of the Ohio House of Representatives from 1995 through 2002. She received her BA from Youngstown State University in 1979 and a JD from the Moritz College of Law at Ohio State University in 1982. She left the House due to term limits and then lost the election for Franklin County clerk of courts. Ohio Governor Taft appointed her to the Franklin County Municipal Court. Despite her low standing as a judge, she was recently reelected with 60 percent of the votes. Her reelection seems to reaffirm concerns over electing judges. As we have previously discussed, low-ranking and even unbalanced judges have been reelected in campaigns that seem disconnected from the merits of judicial retention (here and here and here).

Here is the opinion: Ohio Reprimand

Source: Dispatch as first seen on ABA Journal

70 thoughts on “Ohio Judge Reprimanded After Berating Jurors For Acquitting Criminal Defendant”

  1. “DOG HELP YOU ALL” The truth has escaped from the “Courthouse Liars Club”*!*

  2. Trooper York:

    “Here’s the thing buddy. I have a life and I don’t spend all of it jousting with morons on the internet. In fact I spend way too much time on it as it stands. Why don’t you get a life?”

    ******************

    By my count, pal, you comment about three times more than I do and say a third as much with nary an objective reference to anything. I wouldn’t trade lives with you as mine is quite full. Thanks anyway.

  3. on 1, March 16, 2015 at 8:57 pmKen Rogers
    @Herr Schulte

    Do you filter everything through an order-giving/order-taking Mentalität?

    ***************************
    Ja voll.

  4. Comrade Kenny – you forgot to say if you were getting crib sheets from the DNC or Obummer’s organization. Could you clear that up for us? Enquiring Minds want to know.

  5. What is it with the big generalizations? “Liberals revere the education industry”? Where is the Handbook of Generalizations about Liberals that every conservative internet commenter seems to have?

    1. @EhLA

      “What is it with the big generalizations? “Liberals revere the education industry”? Where is the Handbook of Generalizations about Liberals that every conservative internet commenter seems to have?”

      It’s my impression, from my efforts at communicating with self-described “conservatives,” that most of their generalizing ditto-headness comes from their thoroughgoing indoctrination by their Iconic Mentor and Talker-in-Chief, Gush Dimbaugh.

      There is no “handbook,” per se, as its part of an oral tradition that is assiduously memorized by all members of the Dimbaugh Tribe.

      Hope that helps.

      1. Ken Rogers – since I am anti-authoritarian I refuse to take orders from anyone. I do not get crib sheets from anyone. Although, from the memes that run on here I am guessing that some are getting material from the DNC or Obummers org. For example, several of our female commenters use the same language structure over and over during the week, but change on Sunday. One has a word of the week. She works the word into almost every post. I do know that more that one person is using Alinsky’s book, whether it was a handout or they bought their own copy, I do not know.

        1. @Herr Schulte

          “Ken Rogers – since I am anti-authoritarian I refuse to take orders from anyone.”

          Who said anything about “orders,” mein wenig antiautoritären martinet? We were talking about indoctrination.

          Do you filter everything through an order-giving/order-taking Mentalität?

          1. Kenny baby – indoctrination subsumes taking orders. And antiautoritären martinet is a conflict of terms even in German.

            When I was in school we had a name for people like you. We have not had a case like you on here for 3 months or so. Thanks for joining us. I needed the entertainment.

            1. @Herr Sergeant Schulte

              ” And antiautoritären martinet is a conflict of terms even in German.”

              I “knew” I should have put it in quotation marks so you’d tumble to the irony.

              Is English your second language, by any chance?

  6. Here’s the thing buddy. I have a life and I don’t spend all of it jousting with morons on the internet. In fact I spend way too much time on it as it stands. Why don’t you get a life?

  7. Nicky:

    Can you really blame Ol’ Trooper for vacating the field with just a flash card in reply. He’s caught for the blowhard he so obviously is and has left you, his personal peon, to carry on the fight. Too bad though, because he’s actually an intellectual challenge. Btw, you keep up the alcohol references. I like a good projection every now and again. Hell, have another on me.

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