Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Wednesday, June 21, 2023


Page 1


Marcus Aspires to Be Contestant on Jeopardy


By a MetNews Staff Writer


Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Stephen A. Marcus will engage in an unusual retirement pursuit: preparing to become a contestant on a television quiz show.

“I will be spending the most time in the next year studying to become a contestant on the show Jeopardy,” he related on Sunday. “I plan to watch Jeopardy reruns and read encyclopedias from cover to cover.”

On Jeopardy, the contestant is given the answer and must tell what the question is.

Other plans, Marcus said, “include working as an assigned judge, traveling, working for a nonprofit as a volunteer, and appearing as an extra in television shows.”

Marcus, as previously reported, will leave his post on June 28 and, after using earned vacation days, will officially retire on Aug. 9.

Judge’s Memories

Looking back on his career on the bench—which began on April 1, 1989 when he became a Los Angeles Municipal Court commissioner, with a judgeship on that court awarded by Gov. George Deukmejian a month-and-a-half later—Marcus, who ascended to the Superior Court through court unification in 2000 said:

“My fondest memories of working as a Superior Court judge and Municipal Court judge include the 32 Drug Court graduations that I presided over. The absolute joy of the individual defendants and their families for completing a one year drug treatment program was unmatched.”

Marcus added:

“I am very proud of the successful drug court program that I presided over for more than seven years. It was extremely gratifying to watch former drug addicts be transformed into sober individuals who embraced their recovery. I still receive letters from time to time from some of the successful graduates.”

He reflected:

“It took almost two years to get the criminal justice agencies to agree to open and participate in a drug court program. Unfortunately, the new drug legislation has seriously compromised the effectiveness of a drug court model.”

White House Ceremony

The judge recounted that as the first drug court judge in Southern California, he was invited to the White House for the formal signing of the federal Crime Bill—more formally known as The Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994. He met President Bill Clinton who later autographed for him a photo taken at the signing ceremony, he said.

Marcus—who has been seen through the years taking photos at legal community events—noted:

“I had a front row seat and took a great picture of the Senators and police chiefs who stood behind the president when he signed the bill.”

Jury System Supporter

A supporter of the jury system, the judge said:

“I have felt privileged to work with ordinary citizens who sacrifice their time to serve on juries. Their dedication and hard work did not go unnoticed by this jurist. I saw jurors over and over again made incredible sacrifices of time and money to complete their duties and render a verdict.

It is my fond hope that I can convince the Legislature and the governor to increase the pay of Jurors from the paltry 15 dollars a day to a minimum of $50 dollars a day.”

Serving as a judge has been “a dream job” for him, Marcus remarked, adding that he “felt every day was magical and important.”


Copyright 2023, Metropolitan News Company