April 17, 2007
The Fund for Modern Courts, together with the New York State Bar Association, sponsored a Continuing Legal Education entitled: Perspectives on Criminal Jurisdiction in Town and Village Justice Courts: Is There Justice in Justice Courts.
The active discussion centered on the criminal practice of law in the State’s more than 1200 Town and Village Justice Courts, whether criminal justice responsibilities are being met, and whether the system can be improved. The program focused on the concerns about the Justice Courts that were raised in a series of articles in the New York Times and other newspapers in the State, and at public hearings before Senate and Assembly. The panelists addressed the issues from the perspective of prosecutors, defense attorneys, judges, the Office of Court Administration and litigants.
Hon. David O. Fuller, Jr., Village Justice of Tuckahoe, Westchester County, President of the New York State Magistrates Association and in private practice at Bosworth, Gray & Fuller; Greg D. Lubow, Esq., Vice President of the NYS Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and in a private practice in Greene County; Connie Neal, MPA, Director of Criminal Justice Projects for the New York State Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Inc.; Jack Quinn, Esq., Member of the New York State Assembly from Erie County; Hon. Diana Lufkin Schilling, Special Counsel to the Deputy Chief Administrative Judge for Courts Outside of New York City, and Town Justice in East Greenbush, Rensselaer County; Hon. David Soares, District Attorney, Albany County; and Hon. Edward G. Van Der Water, Town Justice of Van Buren, Onondaga County, and Vice President of the New York State Magistrates Association. The forum was moderated by Daniel R. Murdock, Esq., Chair of The Fund for Modern Courts Task Force on Justice Courts, and Of Counsel at Fulbright & Jaworski, L.L.P.