A combative day in the disciplinary hearing before a panel that will make a recommendation as to whether or not Judge Angela Stokes should keep her law license. Questioning ranged from serious to silly.
Stokes attorney Larry Zuckerman challenged former Cleveland Municipal Court Presiding Judge Larry Jones. At one point telling him, 'I can slice and dice you from here to next week but I don't want to.' That raised an objection, followed by a prompt from the panel's chairman for him to move along with questioning.
The strategy of Zuckerman appeared clear. To show the three judge panel that will decide her fate that Stokes did not overuse court resources. He continually cut Judge Jones off, trying to hammer home the point that the court was always on budget, therefore Stokes was not a drain on resources asking Jones, "She didn't cause you ever to live outside your budget did she?"
The Judge replied, "She did not."
But previously Jones had made the point that resources of other Judges were moved to Stokes courtroom to stay on budget.
Zuckerman showed a series of pictures found posted on bailiff's lockers. Some racial, some sexual, all offensive. His theory, when Judge Stokes complained and wanted them removed the bailiff's resented it.
Up until these proceedings more than a quarter million dollars has been spent by the city defending Stokes. The total could easily be more than a million dollars before the case is over.