Another Canadian judge has sullied his high office. Manitoba Provincial Court Judge Brian Corrin, age 65, has been placed on administrative leave after being charged with assault and uttering threats. He was taken into police custody and later released on a Promise to Appear. Several news agencies are reporting that Judge Corrin’s victim was his 89 year-old mother.
Not surprisingly, Judge Corrin is no stranger to controversy. He has had more than his share of criticism from his governing body and the appellate court.
In 1996 Judge Corrin abandoned a drunk driving trial to oversee the repair of his vehicle. He was convicted of ten counts of professional misconduct, suspended from the bench for one month and ordered to write an essay on how to be a good judge.
In April 2008 he sentenced a young offender to six months in jail for a series of drug-induced robberies. Corrin rationalized that since the young man did not come from a dysfunctional home or a bad neighbourhood, but from rural Manitoba, he could not rely on those mitigating factors to impose a lighter sentence.
Manitoba’s appeal court rejected Judge Corrin’s stereotyping and criticized Judge Corrin for imposing a harsher sentence based on irrelevant criteria.
In another case that raised the ire of Manitoba’s Court of Appeal, Corrin referred to the accused, a university student who had smashed a number of red-light cameras over a one-year period, as a “domestic terrorist” and lectured him on his “political agenda”.
Judge Corrin served as an elected politician before his appointment to the court. He is, of course, presumed innocent until proven guilty.
Lawdiva aka Georgialee Lang