Judge Punished for Inappropriate Facebook Posts 
Download PDF
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)

Facebook Sues Prestigious Law Firm for Fraud

Summary: A senior judge in Minnesota has been publicly reprimanded for his inappropriate Facebook posts about ongoing human trafficking, kidnapping, and homicide cases.

On Friday, the Minnesota Board of Judicial Standards reprimanded Judge Edward Bearse of Anoka County. Bearse had been caught posting tidbits about his presiding cases on Facebook.


According to the Star Tribune, this is the first time disciplinary action has been taken against a Minnesota judge because of social media usage, but other courts around the country have grappled with free speech, the appearance of impartiality, and a defendant’s right to a fair trial.

“As a government employee, judges, like all other public employees, retain speech rights, but they are limited in ways in which other people’s speech rights are not,” Raleigh Levine, a professor at William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, said. “There is a real concern that there is an appearance of partiality here. The Supreme Court has made it clear that members of the public must be able to believe in the impartiality of those on the bench.”

The 73-year-old senior judge said he was relatively new to Facebook and didn’t realize the public could see his tame but inappropriate postings. Examples of his writing included “We deal w/ a lot of geniuses!” in reference to defendants with long criminal histories and once referring to a defendant as a “Klunk.” The worst of it, though, was that a guilty verdict for a sex trafficking case was vacated when prosecutors and the defense discovered he wrote lengthy posts about the trial.

Get JD Journal in Your Mail

Subscribe to our FREE daily news alerts and get the latest updates on the most happening events in the legal, business, and celebrity world. You also get your daily dose of humor and entertainment!!

“Having to start all over is a challenge for anyone’s resources,” Olmsted County Attorney Mark Ostrem said to the Star Tribune.

At the Board trial, Bearse admitted he was wrong to post about his cases, but he thought that only his 80 Facebook friends could see his posts, which out of ignorance, he had not set to private. He was remorseful and regretted sharing the posts with friends in the first place.

The Board wrote that although there were no signs Bearse was unfair as a judge, his posts “could undermine the appearance of his impartiality.”

This was Bearse’s first discipline in his career of 32 years. The public reprimand carries no fine.

Source: http://www.startribune.com/anoka-county-judge-reprimanded-for-facebook-posts-about-cases/352399481/

Source: http://www.mprnews.org/story/2015/11/20/edward-bearse


Interesting Legal Sites You May Like




Search Now

Mid-level Litigation Attorney with motions experience


Seattle office of our client seeks mid-level litigation attorney with 3-5 years of experience, inclu...

Apply Now

Environmental /Land Use Attorney with 2-3 years of experience

USA-CA-San Francisco

San Francisco office of our client seeks environmental /land use attorney with 2-3 years of experien...

Apply Now

Litigation Attorney with 2-5 years of insurance defense experience


Jacksonville office of our client seeks litigation attorney with 2-5 years of previous insurance def...

Apply Now

Tax Associate with Real Estate / Capital Markets Experience


Chicago office is seeking a tax attorney with 3-5 years of experience. Significant experience in rea...

Apply Now




Boutique East Bay litigation defense firm is seeking a junior to mid-level attorney. Candidates for ...

Apply now

Managing Director, Litigation Finance Investments


Title                ...

Apply now

Contract Associate


Seeking lawyer with at least 2 yrs experience in complex real estate transactional matters, with wil...

Apply now

Senior Associate Attorney


We are a boutique-sized law firm (6 attys) seeking a self-motivated litigation senior associate from...

Apply now

Most Popular


To Top