The Alaska Supreme Court has issued a public censure against a judge who they said harmed witnesses, victims and the court system’s image of integrity.
According to the Alaska Dispatch News
, Nome Superior Court Judge Timothy Dooley was given the censure or a public statement of wrongdoing after the Supreme Court concluded hearing an ethics complaint over five controversial comments the judge made in five separate occasions.
The Alaska Commission on Judicial Conduct made the recommendation in December which Dooley appears to have accepted after initially denying any wrongdoing. He has since apologised.
In a report in December, the Alaska Dispatch News
detailed the judge’s comments.
On 29 May 2013, Dooley asked a defendant during sentencing, “Has anything good ever come out of drinking, except for sex with a pretty girl?”
On 29 October 2013, the judge said during sentencing, “What you've done with this young girl, it's a strange thing, routinely done in Afghanistan, where they marry 6-year-old girls. In our society, and in the society of the local tribal communities, supposed to be totally forbidden.”
On 5 November 2013, in a sexual abuse trial in which a 14-year-old girl was the victim, Dooley said, “This was not someone who was, and I hate to use the phrase, 'asking for it.' There are girls out there that seem to be temptresses. And this does not seem to be anything like that.”
On 12 August 2014, the judge said in a civil trial, “I'm gonna enforce these oaths and they're enforceable with a 2-year sentence for perjury. And I'd be the sentencing judge. I also have a medieval Christianity that says if you violate an oath, you're going to Hell. You all may not share that, but I'm planning to populate Hell.”
On 20 August 2014, Dooley said off the record to a jury about a soft-spoken witness, “I'm sorry, folks, but I can't slap her around to make her talk louder.”
The judge, who retires February 2017, said in December that he has “quit going off script” and will “screen what I say far more.”