Judicial MIisconduct Hearing May 19

Judicial MIisconduct Hearing May 19

Posted in the Scituate Forum

Maryjane DeLory

Bennington, VT

#1 Mar 21, 2008
Here is a cut and paste version of article appearing in SouthCoast Today
"Hearing scheduled for judge with New Bedford ties
Standard-Times staff writer
March 06, 2008 6:00 AM
A public hearing on charges against Plymouth County Probate and Family Court Associate Judge Michael J. Livingstone, who has ties to New Bedford, has been scheduled for May 19.
Judge Livingstone faces misconduct charges that could lead to a range of penalties, including retirement, private or public reprimand, censure or fine. A judge can be removed only by the state Legislature. He continues to serve pending review by the Massachusetts Commission on Judicial Conduct.
He was scheduled for a public hearing in January, but it was delayed while an effort was made to have a plea bargain resolve the matter. The plea agreement was submitted Jan. 7 to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, which rejected it in mid-February. Terms of the plea agreement have not been made public.
Judge Livingstone is former legal counsel to the New Bedford City Council.
He is accused of falsely telling a court he was not involved in the day-to-day operation of rental properties in New Bedford, and of accepting fees from former law clients while serving as a judge. He also is accused of making false claims on his taxes and managing commercial properties in violation of judicial ethics."
Since January, 2008 JaneSmithOrg has heard from many sharing complaints they have filed. Complaintants have not heard from the Commission on Judicial Conduct - other than acknowledgment complaints are received and under review. These complaints are directly related to the Judge's conduct on the bench. Seems his business ethics (lack thereof) spill over to his conduct on the bench. The good news?! He appears to be gender neutral.
No, there is no good news. When he resigns those who have been harmed may have hope of the opportunity to be heard by a new Judge - if they can afford another appearance, have not gone bankrupt or worse. The damage he's done in his short time on the bench is vast and far reaching.
Part of his punishment should include compensation for those he's irretriveably harmed - fund the college educations of the children he's unnecessarily separated from parents, fund college and counseling for children forced to remain in abusive homes, prevented from relocating to more affordable areas, parents jailed without legitimate proof and opportunity to rebuff ... More to come.

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