Judge chases Public Defender out of town; no lawsuit
The Sixth Circuit threw out a case by a Public Defender who was run out of town by the local judge in the small town of Gallipolis. After robust motions and critical comments, Judge Evans would not sit on any case involving Robert Bright. Bright was fired as a public defender and sued the Judge, the County, and his employer. He lost on all counts. The judge had immunity for his actions from the bench. The employer could not be liable for firing him for his statements because, a prior precedential case held, statements in court are not protected by the First Amendment. The County did not tell the Judge what to do, and did not have to pay a visiting judge to sit on all of Bright’s cases.