Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Butte County Judge Robert Glusman Elected CJA President
By KENNETH OFGANG, Staff Writer
Butte Superior Court Judge Robert A. Glusman was elected president of the California Judges Association yesterday, the group said in a release.
Glusman, who becomes CJA’s 82nd president, was elected by the Executive Board, which met in Sacramento. He will serve a one-year term beginning Oct. 13, succeeding Sonoma Superior Court Judge Allan Hardcastle.
Glusman, 62, defeated Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Victor Wright in the balloting. The new president has been a board member for three years and is currently one of two CJA vice presidents.
In other balloting, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Lisa Lench and San Diego Superior Court Judge Joan Weber defeated retired Shasta Superior Court Judge Gregory Caskey for the vice presidencies. Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michele Flurer was unopposed for secretary/treasurer.
Glusman told the MetNews that he expects to be doing many of the same things as Hardcastle, particularly dealing with budget issues. He commented on the budget deal unveiled yesterday in Sacramento, at the same time the board was meeting.
Like others in the courts, he hailed the restoration of $63 million to the courts but said more was needed.
“We truly hope the governor’s numbers are wrong and we can get back some of the money we lost the last three to five years,” because there’s no question that cutbacks are limiting access to the courts, he said.
He credited Hardcastle with hard work on the budget and other issues. He said he hoped to work with prosecutors and criminal defense lawyers to advance a bill, stymied last session, which would reduce the number of peremptory challenges in misdemeanor cases.
Current law allows each party either six or 10 peremptory challenges, depending on whether the maximum sentence for the charged offense exceeds or does not exceed 90 days in jail. SB 974, by Sen. Noreen Evans, D-Santa Rosa, would cut that to five per side in all misdemeanors.
Glusman noted that he himself had a trial in which 18 peremptory challenges were used in a drunk driving case in which the entire presentation of evidence took two hours.
“I’m convinced that due process could have been obtained without that” prolonged voir dire.
He has served almost 11 years on the Butte court, to which he was appointed by then-Gov. Gray Davis in 2002. He previously was in private practice for about 25 years, and was a certified specialist in family law.
Glusman has presided primarily in the criminal division—with assignments that have included Drug Court, Proposition 36, domestic violence, and “high intensity” drunk driving cases, as well as running a felony calendar and conducting felony trials—and spent a year in family law.
He is currently supervising judge of the civil and probate divisions and the site judge in Chico, assignments he took up last year. He was appointed to be a member of the Ethics Committee of the CJA in 2007 and will complete his second three-year term in October.
A native of Philadelphia, Pa., Glusman moved with his family to Los Angeles in 1960 at age nine and graduated from Grant High School in the San Fernando Valley. He received his B.A. in history from UC Santa Barbara in 1972 and his law degree from the University of Santa Clara in 1976, before moving to Chico, where he maintained a solo law practice until Davis appointed him a judge.
Copyright 2013, Metropolitan News Company