NY disciplines judge for excessive fines on truckers

| 6/5/2002

A New York State commission has disciplined a small-town judge for issuing extra-heavy fines on truckdrivers. The judge reportedly wanted truckers to stay out of his town.

The state Commission on Judicial Conduct censured Pavilion Town Justice Lawrence Reid in Genesse County for fining truckers more than the state maximum, according to a published report. The reprimand followed an article Reid wrote in a town newsletter. It read, in part: "The fines of truckers in Pavilion have increased dramatically and will continue to increase until such time as the truckers realize that the savings of $40 may not be worth the gamble of a trip through Pavilion."

The judge stated he fined truckers $50 to $70 more than the state maximum for speeding to discourage them from using routes 63 and 19. Reid said he was trying to protect the safety of residents.

The censure - or public condemnation - is the second-most severe admonishment for a judge. Removal is the greatest sanction the commission can levy.