Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Tuesday. July 26, 2005


Page 3


‘Reality’ Show Featuring Retired Local Judges Set to Debut Thursday


By a MetNews Staff Writer


Four retired Los Angeles Superior Court judges will be featured in the eight-episode alternative drama series “The Law Firm” on NBC, debuting Thursday at 9 p.m.

Lawrence W. Crispo, Burton S. Katz, Dion G. Morrow, and Martha Goldin will sit on the bench, as real attorneys compete with one another while trying “real court cases with real clients,” in front of the jurists and “juries,” the show’s publicists said.

The proceedings are in the nature of binding arbitration.

Miami-based trial attorney and NBC legal analyst Roy Black is the “managing partner” of the series, which is being produced by attorney David E. Kelley.

Black will at the conclusion of each episode decide which of the 12 attorney/contestants will be allowed to return the following week.

The judges will decide some of the cases, while others will see their fate determine by a “jury.” The last attorney to remain on the show is set to earn $250,000.

Crispo, 71, retired last year after being appointed to the bench by then-Gov. Pete Wilson in 1994. He was previously a partner in a litigation firm, then known as Breidenbach, Swainston, Crispo & Way.

Katz, 66, was admitted to the Bar in 1964 and was a prosecutor for 14 years, with trial credits including two murders by members of the Manson Family and the 1975 “Hamburger Hamlet” murder case. He was a judge of the Los Angeles Municipal Court from 1978-81 and of the Superior Court from 1981 until being granted disability retirement in 1987.

Morrow, 73, was admitted to practice in 1957 and was in private practice prior to being appointed to the Compton Municipal Court in 1975 by then-Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr. He was promoted to the Superior Court in 1978 and retired in late 1995.

Goldin, 77, became a Los Angeles Municipal Court Judge in 1980 after 15 years in private practice, handling primarily civil rights and criminal cases. She was elevated to the Los Angeles Superior Court by then-Gov. Jerry Brown in 1982 and retired in 1996.

Also serving as a judge on the show will be retired Tulare Superior Court Judge Howard Broadman, who was censured by the California Supreme Court in 1998 for misconduct, and publicly admonished by the Commission on Judicial Performance the following year.


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