Friday, June 5, 2009

A Hanging Judge On SCOTUS?

Judge Sonia Sotomayor may have been appointed by a Democrat but she has a reputation of being a tough on crime judge. She was a prosecutor for a while so this may be the origin of her no nonsense approach to criminal justice issues.
After Yale Law School, Judge Sotomayor joined the Manhattan district attorney's office. She spent five years at the office, and handled high-profile murder and child-pornography cases.

New York criminal-defense lawyers say she is surprisingly tough on crime for a Democratic-backed appointee -- a byproduct, they believe, of her tenure as a prosecutor.

"The reputation of Sotomayor was that sentencing was not an easy ride," says Gerald Shargel, a criminal-defense attorney. In a 1997 trial, Mr. Shargel asked Judge Sotomayor to show leniency in sentencing William Duker, a prominent New York lawyer who had pleaded guilty to overbilling the government. Mr. Shargel wanted Mr. Duker to be sent to an alcohol treatment program, in lieu of prison. The judge, however, sentenced the attorney to 33 months in prison, in line with the federal sentencing guidelines.

Discuss Obama's court pick, explore or create new topics.
Following recent Supreme Court precedent, Judge Sotomayor tends to see relatively few grounds to overturn criminal convictions, says John Siffert, a New York attorney who taught an appellate advocacy class with the judge at New York University School of Law from 1996 to 2006. On the trial bench, he says, "she was not viewed as a pro-defense judge." Source: Wall Street Journal

I predict that she's going to get through the confirmation process pretty easily.

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