Charges against Virginia Judges no longer Confidential

A little noticed ballot initiative during the November 1998 elections concerned a Virginia referendum to help strip judges in Virginia of the virtual immunity for any criminal acts which they commit.

It is well established that Judge Lawrence Janow and Judge Michael Gamble are criminals who were not merely involved in the kidnapping of Shamema Honzagool Sloan. Judge Gamble also confiscated the Sloan family residence at 917 Old Trents Ferry Road in Lynchburg and froze the Sloan Family bank account so as to deprive the Sloan family of the money they needed to fight their case in court.

These and other Virginia judges have been able to get away with these and similar crimes in part due to the fact that the Constitution of Virginia, alone among the states, prohibits any charges against judges from being revealed. Virginia also claims sovereign immunity for its officials, including judges.

Apparently, this problem has not gone unnoticed, because a group had the following initiative placed on the Virginia ballot:

Question 2: Shall the Constitution of Virginia be amended to delete the present requirement that the proceedings of the Judicial Inquiry and Review Commission concerning charges against judges shall be confidential so that the General Assembly can provide by law to what extent Commission proceedings and documents will be confidential?

Vote Yes/No.

This measure passed by a vote of

For Question 2 --- 686,805 64 percent Against Question 2 --- 393,813 36 percent

Although this does not entirely solve the problem, it is certainly a step in the right direction. Here are links:

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