Thursday, October 6, 2016
Kevin Brazile Elected Assistant Presiding Judge
By a MetNews Staff Writer
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Kevin Brazile has been elected as the court’s next assistant presiding judge, a canvassing committee certified yesterday.
The three-judge committee reported that Brazile had been elected over his lone opponent, Michael Vicencia, in balloting open to all of the court’s judges. Vote totals were not reported.
Brazile will succeed current Assistant Presiding Judge Daniel Buckley on Jan. 1. Buckley, who was elected presiding judge without opposition, as is the court’s tradition, will succeed Presiding Judge Carolyn Kuhl that same day.
Brazile was appointed to the court Dec. 26, 2002, by then-Gov. Gray Davis after an 18-year career in the County Counsel’s Office, where he rose to the position of assistant county counsel in charge of the General Litigation Division, overseeing the defense of police misconduct, employment discrimination and sexual harassment litigation. In 1994 he was awarded the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Civil Attorney of the Year Award.
His undergraduate and law degrees are from UCLA.
Brazile is currently supervising judge of the civil departments downtown. He was first assigned to the Stanley Mosk Courthouse in October 2007, after hearing limited jurisdiction civil trials and misdemeanor and felony jury trials.
He also served as site judge in West Covina, and had assignments in El Monte and Glendale as well. He has served on the Judicial Council Civil Advisory Committee.
He has heard a number of high-profile cases in the last few years.
Last year he was chosen to hear a motion to disqualify Orange Superior Court John Conley from hearing the double-murder case against actor Daniel Patrick Wozniak. Brazile denied the motion, saying Conley’s past activities as a deputy district attorney did not create an objective reason to believe he was biased against the defendant.
Wozniak was convicted, and Conley last month sentenced him to death.
Brazile also was the judge in the case brought by former LAPD Officer Enrique Chavez, injured in 2006 after his 3-year-old son, seated behind him in Chavez’s personal vehicle, picked up the officer’s service revolver, which discharged.
Chavez sued manufacturer Glock Inc. and the Los Angeles Police Revolver and Athletic Club, which sold him the gun. Brazile granted summary judgment to the defendants in 2010, rejecting the plaintiff’s theories of failure to warn, strict liability based on design defect, and breach of implied warranty.
The Court of Appeal for this district agreed with Brazile that Chavez was a “sophisticated user” who could not sue for failure to warn. But it allowed Chavez to proceed on his other theories, and the case settled earlier this year.
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