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Friday, February 20, 2009

NY Supreme Court Judge Expected to Resign, Pressured by Corrupt 'Ethics' Committee

Justice Makowski expected to resign amid state judicial probe
State is probing tie to friend’s DWI case
The Buffalo News by Patrick Lakamp and Gene Warner - February 20, 2009

Joseph G. Makowski is expected to resign his seat as a State Supreme Court justice—possibly in the next few days— amid a state judicial investigation and a potential grand jury probe of written claims he made trying to clear a friend in a drunken-driving case, several legal sources have told The Buffalo News. For at least three months, the State Commission on Judicial Conduct has been asking local law enforcement officials what they know about the affidavit Makowski signed after the Sept. 2 DWI arrest of former prosecutor Anne E. Adams. Makowski filed that affidavit as a witness after having been with Adams in the hours before her arrest. In that statement, dated Sept. 11, Makowski repeatedly stated that nothing in Adams’ behavior suggested she couldn’t drive safely home from a downtown Buffalo restaurant that night. Several witnesses, though, have given authorities statements that suggest Adams showed obvious signs of being intoxicated, both in her manner and in her driving.

Adams was charged with aggravated DWI, accused of having a blood-alcohol content of 0.19 percent at the time of her arrest. That’s more than twice the state’s legal limit. A call to Makowski’s attorney, Joel L. Daniels, was not returned. An Erie County grand jury is expected to investigate both Makowski and Adams, probably sometime in the next couple of weeks, legal sources have said. That probe, of course, would be called off if any plea deals are made in the case. A plea deal that might result in a misdemeanor admission by Makowski probably would not save his seat on the bench, legal sources say. But such a deal could keep him from being permanently disbarred. Any decision on disbarment would be made by an attorneys grievance committee, an arm of the State Appellate Division. Such a plea deal also could end the Commission on Judicial Conduct probe.

The commission has jurisdiction over 3,400 judges and justices of the state Unified Court System. It investigates about 1,500 complaints per year and recommends a wide range of actions against any jurists found guilty of misconduct through formal hearings. Adams’ former attorney had filed the judge’s signed statement as part of a motion to dismiss the DWI case against her in Town of Hamburg Court. That attorney eventually withdrew that motion. “Ms. Adams has a 20-year, high-profile career as both a prosecutor and defense attorney,” Makowski wrote in his affidavit. “She also holds a full-time faculty position at UB Law School. These charges, even if resulting in an acquittal, would seriously damage her reputation in the community and future professional prospects. For these reasons, I believe a dismissal in the interests of justice is warranted.” Investigators are studying the following possible discrepancies between Makowski’s affidavit and witnesses’ statements to authorities, according to sources close to the case:

• “When we left the restaurant, I walked Ms. Adams to her car,” the affidavit states. “There was nothing unusual in her speech, gait or mannerisms. She was entirely appropriate.” An eyewitness, however, has told law enforcement officials that Adams was stumbling as she headed for her car and that the man with her was holding her to keep her from falling.

•“After speaking with Ms. Adams for another five minutes, I told her I had to get on the Skyway to my mother’s house,” the judge wrote. “She told me she was heading to her home in Angola on the same route. I drove over the Skyway to South Buffalo with Ms. Adams’ vehicle in my continuous presence.” But an eyewitness told authorities Makowski also got into Adams’ car, and the two sat inside the car for about 20 minutes. Adams then pulled her convertible into another part of the Shanghai Red’s restaurant parking lot, near the marina. That is where she backed into a parked car before pulling away. A Buffalo police officer, parked nearby, noticed what happened and pulled up alongside her vehicle. He recognized Adams and said to her, “Counselor, where are you going?” a law enforcement source told The News. The judge was in Adams’ car at the time, the same source said. Adams then parked her car and went into the restaurant to try to find out who owned the car she had struck with her vehicle. A restaurant employee discovered the car belonged to another employee. A few days later, Adams sent a payment of several hundred dollars to the employee to cover the damage.

• “We traveled along Route 5, which is now under construction,” wrote Makowski, who was following her in his car. “Her driving was entirely appropriate. She drove at the appropriate speed, she negotiated turns and tight construction lanes properly.” But another driver later reported an erratic driver in that area. Hamburg Police Officer Vincent Pupo III pulled Adams’ vehicle over when he saw her convertible weaving from lane to lane, nearly striking a guardrail, near Ford Motor Co.’s Buffalo Stamping Plant, according to a police report. plakamp@buffnews.com and gwarner@buffnews.com

9 comments:

albany court clerk said...

I smell Bob Tembeckjian's dirty smell all over this. This man must be stopped. He and his band of thugs have destroyed the faith the people have in their judiciary.

brooklyn esq said...

I agree. Whether the judge did something wrong or not is immaterial. The judge should be able to at least believe that the Commission on Judicial Conduct is a fair arbiter. And we all know that the Commission on Judicial Conduct hasn't been fair in 10-15 years. Cuomo needs to step up to the plate on this.

will galison said...

At the confirmation "hearing" last week, Tembeckjian was standing right next to me.

Instead of inviting the New York public to the "Public Hearing", the Judicial Committee invited all of Lippman's fellow crooks, including Tembeckjian.

If there is ONE PERSON in New York who SHOULD NOT have attended the hearing, it is the man who's sole job in life is to be 100% UNAFFILIATED with any judge in New York State: Robert Tembjeckjian,

The fact that he was at Lippman's confirmation, grinning like a fool and cheering wildly after Lippman's speech, only shows that these criminals wouldn't know an appearance of impropriety if it bit them.

Tembeckjian was also giggling like an obnoxious little schoolgirl during Elena Sassower's testimony. His tittering is probably audible on the recording of the hearing, if Elena's testimony has not been lost due to a freak camera malfunction.

I give Tembeckjian two years before he is behind bars for a long, long time. He should share a cell with Lippman, Blogojavitch, Madoff, Drier, Kaye...and Charles Manson.

Anonymous said...

Makowski is being investigated by the Rochester branch of the CJC... and only because this story created a huge stir in the MEDIA and blogs, in upstate by the citizens who were disgusted by the criminal behavior of 2 other judges, recently ...Supreme Ct Judge Amy Jo Fricano and Niagara Falls Judge Restaino....both gone for their actions.

Makowski wasted his influence on the "apple of his eye", when on an earlier date he was informed that his brothers were arrested twice for fighting and abusing his mother. A court employee in a a lower court informed him as a favor and shortly realized that kindness was a mistake...he angrily screamed.."screw all of them, including my mother"!

Also Ms. Adams was fired from the DA'S office back in the 90's for misconduct and now the 2 of them have joined together to become what they always were....political hacks that have brought disgrace to the NY judicial and legal systems...without anyone's help in the exposure.

Upstate jusiciary is a soap opera lusting for national attention!

Anonymous said...

Dang. You got my hopes up. I thought it was going to be Nicolai or Scarpino.

Nail all of these Bastards said...

This Judge should also be charged with filing a FALSE INSTRUMENT I'm sure the fix is already in with the CJC..What a JOKE of an AGENCY, the CJC...Pay your DUES and your free as a bird.

THREE RING CIRCUS said...

You have CLOWN after CLOWN after CLOWN running these Agencies..CJC.. DDC.. etc..How does anyone ever expect to get JUSTICE when these CROOKS are the one's running the show.

I PRAY TO GOD said...

I pray to GOD that the new Presiding Judge that has taken over Judge Lippman's position will put these JOKERS away for good. It's time to clean up the NY Court system.

Beaming in Buffalo said...

It's important to remember that the useless Commission on Judicial Conduct had to act because our District Attorney Frank Sedita had the balls to go after two lying lawyers- one of whom was a judge and the other one a knucklehead New York State law school employee ! Three cheers for Frank Sedita!! You downstate bloggers should get to know this guy. He'll clean up some of OCA's do-do, the drippings of which flow from way up north all the way to the southern tip of Manhattan. Yup, this state's an ethics cesspool.

Blog Archive

See Video of Senator John L. Sampson's 1st Hearing on Court 'Ethics' Corruption

The first hearing, held in Albany on June 8, 2009 hearing is on two videos:


               Video of 1st Hearing on Court 'Ethics' Corruption
               The June 8, 2009 hearing is on two videos:
         
               CLICK HERE TO SEE Part 1
               CLICK HERE TO SEE Part 2