Professor Anil Kalhan joined three other panelists at the U.S. Southern District courthouse in New York on Jan. 8 to examine the decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit to remove Shira A. Scheindlin as the judge presiding over the NYPD's stop-and-frisk cases.
After presiding over the cases for over 14 years, a three-judge circuit panel removed Scheindlin from the stop-and-frisk cases for allegedly violating the judicial code of conduct by compromising her "appearance of impartiality." The circuit later revised its determination finding no official misconduct on the part of Scheindlin but adhering to its decision to remove her from the cases.
Kalhan criticized the circuit panel's decision and praised Scheindlin for publicly questioning whether some of her colleagues on the Southern District bench could themselves remain impartial, having been U.S. Attorney's Office prosecutors in the past. These were "issues of legitimate public concern," Kalhan said in support of Scheindlin's remarks prior to her removal.
Approximately 140 people attended the discussion hosted by the New York City Chapter of the Puerto Rican Bar Association, the Federal Bar Association, the National Bar Association, the Network of Bar Leaders and the New York City chapter of the National Lawyers Guild.