Local ‘Judge Judy’ rebuked in Time magazine piece

August 20, 2010

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 12:05 p.m. Aug. 20, 2010

Judge Judith Eiler — the tough-talking King County District Court judge — has been reproached in a blistering piece in Time magazine.

Adam Cohen — a lawyer, former Time scribe and a past editorial board member at The New York Times — took Eiler to task for her brusque behavior on the bench.

The state Supreme Court rebuked Eiler in early August. Justices ordered Eiler to be suspended from the bench for five days without pay.

Eiler used to preside at the Issaquah Courthouse, but has since been reassigned to a district courthouse in Seattle. The court handles traffic infractions, small claims and some civil matters.

Cohen applauded the Supreme Court decision, but pushed for justices to do more.

“It should have pushed back against our rising smackdown culture by removing this judge running amok from her job,” he continued.

Cohen also made inevitable comparisons between Eiler and a certain former New York City Family Court judge.

“It is hard to believe TV’s Judge Judy was not a strong influence on Seattle’s Judge Judy,” he continued. “TV’s Judge Judy yells at litigants and belittles them, and her specialty is finding innovative new ways of calling people stupid.”

South King County voters elected Eiler to the bench in 1992 and re-elected her since; she faces the electorate again in November.

Eiler’s opponent, Des Moines Assistant City Attorney Susan Mahoney, pounced on the piece, and distributed the commentary to journalists.

“This is why I chose to run against this particular judge: to bring ethics and professionalism back to the bench,” Mahoney said in a statement.

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2 Responses to “Local ‘Judge Judy’ rebuked in Time magazine piece”

  1. Nancy Spooner on August 20th, 2010 2:20 pm

    I don’t if she was the one we had to report to in early 1990 or if there was a nasty one ahead of her.

    The case had been ‘dismissed’ but my Mother (who was only a month from death from cancer who was very frail and could barely walk) had to appear in court or loose her house to a lawyer that also should have been removed from the bar.

    We were first on the docket, she looked at the file said it was too thick for her to look at until later in the day. She would not let us take Mom home even though she knew she was very sick and had made her appearance, instead she made her sit there till after 2 in the afternoon.

    Then she looked at the file, said “Oh, this has been dismissed, you can go!”

  2. Mike on September 8th, 2010 6:10 pm

    If my retired friends Judges in Washington state, and my brother who had a Law Firm in Washington for 15 years, now doing legal reform with 60 attorneys working for him. I would be glad to forward any thing which would help get this Judge off the bench.


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