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Judge Who Took Leave For Alcoholism Care Retires

A federal judge who took a medical leave several months ago to 

be treated of sever alcoholism has retired. The judge did not appear to have any problem with her drinking habits until the condition showed its ugly face in her courtroom. At one point, there was a series of mysterious interruptions that led to speculations that something was amiss. This went on for various occasions, until she owned up that she needs help and therefore, she took the leave. It was a bold step especially when you consider the nature of her career, and the demands that come with such a job.

Announcing the Retirement
When announcing the retirement, Clerk of Court in the Western District of Louisiana Tony Moor said that it was a disability retirement. It was to take effect immediately. The judge known as Patricia Minaldi had been going through a series of treatments. Even though everyone was now fully aware of her alcoholism and the effects that it had had on her career, it came as a shock that she was retiring. Everyone had hoped that she would one day come through the treatment and head back to the courtrooms. But that is just one of the effects that excessive consumption of alcohol can have in your health.

Court Records
Some of the accessible court records paint a picture that is quite different from what the pubic knew about the judge. For instance, the unsealed ones show that the alcoholism was so severe that she had problems with her colleagues. At 58, she had no option but to go for treatment in an attempt to save herself and her career. The records also should that a colleague once asked the court to rule that she cannot not even take care of herself. Therefore, it is difficult to imagine how she used to manage court cases, given that her own life was a huge mess behind the scenes.

Unusual Behavior

Further investigations showed that before the removal of the judge from the bench last year, she had exhibited unusual behavior. Her conduct on the bench had got to the nerves of her colleagues. In a nutshell, things were just not working for her. Her lifestyle was in collision with her career, and the resultant situation was one that she could not handle. Yet, the public was looking up to her to deliver sober rulings. Even though she wasn’t sober I her
head, the expectations that were put upon her were too huge. It is little wonder that she had to give in to the pressure that comes with such a situation.

One of the highlights of Minaldi’s career was when she was pulled off a fraud case because there were several mistakes relating to the routine trial procedures. The information shows that even the basic rules that relate to the juniors were never followed when she was handling the case. Although this is just one judge, there is no doubt that there are many other professionals who are going through the same problem because of alcoholism.

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