Tuesday, January 8, 2008
Judge Ray L. Hart Seeking Disability Retirement
By KENNETH OFGANG, Staff Writer
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Ray L. Hart has applied for disability retirement, the MetNews has learned.
Officials at the Commission on Judicial Performance confirmed yesterday that Hart, who was presiding judge of the Los Angeles Municipal Court during the last three weeks of its existence, applied for disability retirement Oct. 19 and that his application is pending.
The commission will make a recommendation as to whether disability retirement should be granted. Chief Justice Ronald M. George has the final decision in the matter.
Hart, 56, is a Santa Monica native and a graduate of Los Angeles public schools, UCLA, and Southwestern Law School. He practiced in a corporate law firm in Century City, doing securities and antitrust work, for several months after being admitted in 1977, then joined the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office, where he did trial and appellate work from 1978 to 1982.
He then spent nine years at this district’s Court of Appeal as a research attorney for then-Justice Lynn “Buck” Compton, holding the post of senior judicial attorney when then-Gov. George Deukmejian appointed him to the bench in 1991. He also taught legal research and writing as an adjunct faculty member.
As a judge, he has taught at the Judicial College and served as chair of the State Trial Court Budget Commission, and did multiple stints as a temporary justice of the Court of Appeal.
He chaired the Municipal Court Judges Association of Los Angeles County in 1997-98, while also serving as the Los Angeles Municipal Court’s supervising judge in West Los Angeles, and was assistant presiding judge of the court in 1998 and 1999.
He was elected presiding judge for 2000, but spent little time in the position because the court was abolished in January as part of court unification. Hart, who had worked hard to see Los Angeles County trial courts unified, said at the time that he was perfectly happy to give up the presiding judge position in order to see that accomplished.
A call left for Hart at his courtroom was not returned.
Copyright 2008, Metropolitan News Company