Black judge refuses to recuse himself in shooting by white officer

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Judge Greg Griffin. (Credit Montgomery (Al) Advertiser)

By Matt Stevens, nytimes.com

An Alabama judge who once complained on Facebook of being racially profiled by the police refused on Thursday to recuse himself in a case involving a white police officer’s fatal shooting of a black man.

Defense lawyers had argued that two posts by the judge, Greg Griffin of the Montgomery County Circuit Court, created the appearance of a conflict, one of the lawyers, Roianne Conner, said in a phone interview.

But Judge Griffin denied the defense’s motion during a hearing on Thursday morning, Ms. Conner said.

“He took it very personally,” she said. “He told me he could take off his black robe, but he couldn’t take off his black skin.”

Thursday’s ruling was the latest twist in an emotionally charged case that has resonated deeply in the predominantly black city of Montgomery, a place with a history of distrust between the local authorities and resident

Ms. Conner estimated that six judges had already recused themselves from the closely watched case for various reasons. And her team has asked to move the trial to another county because, it contends, its client has been the victim of “racial prejudice” since his arrest.

Read more at https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/19/us/black-judge-white-officer-alabama-shooting.html?module=WatchingPortal&region=c-column-middle-span-region&pgType=Homepage&action=click&mediaId=thumb_square&state=standard&contentPlacement=4&version=internal&contentCollection=www.nytimes.com&contentId=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2017%2F05%2F19%2Fus%2Fblack-judge-white-officer-alabama-shooting.html&eventName=Watching-article-click&_r=1

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