Thursday, October 03, 2013

Recusal Motion Rejected In Milwaukee Archdiocese Reorganization Case

In In re Archdiocese of Milwaukee2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 141658 (ED WI, Oct. 1, 2013), Wisconsin federal district court judge Rudolph Randa denied a motion to recuse himself and vacate his earlier decision that a $55 million cemetery perpetual care trust fund is unavailable to creditors, including abuse victims, in the bankruptcy reorganization of the Milwaukee Catholic Archdiocese. (See prior posting.) The motion was based on the fact that in 1975 the judge had purchased a burial crypt for his parents in one of the Catholic Archdiocese's cemeteries. In denying the motion, Judge Rnada said in part:
Aging and death are facts of life, not just for judges. Over 500,000 individuals are interred in the Milwaukee Catholic Cemeteries, so my relation to some of those individuals is a characteristic that I share with countless members of this community. The logical conclusion of the Committee‟s argument is that none of these people could render an impartial decision this case. This is untenable, and it is objectively unreasonable.
The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports on the decision.