Minnesota Supreme Court suspends Judge Patricia Karasov, accused of living outside district

Hennepin County Judge Patricia Karasov — who’d been accused of living outside her district in a wild hearing last winter that included testimony from an ex-husband who is also a judge — has been suspended for six months by the Minnesota Supreme Court.

Karasov was censured and suspended without pay for not living in the district and for failing to cooperate with an investigation by the Minnesota Board on Judicial Standards, reports the Star Tribune:

“We conclude that the Board has proven by clear and convincing evidence that Judge Karasov failed to reside within her judicial district during her continuance in office and that she failed to cooperate and be candid and honest with respect to the Board’s investigation of her residency status,” the high court concluded in its 39-page opinion, released Wednesday.

The state Board on Judicial Standards had recommended a 90-day suspension, but the Supreme Court went even further with today’s ruling.

The hearing last January seemed to some like a family court dispute, with family members and neighbors testifying about whether she lived in a Chisago City lake home.

And she blamed the accusations on rumors spread by her ex-husband, Fred Karasov, who is also a Hennepin County judge.

No comment on the suspension yet from Patricia Karasov or her attorney.

Comments (2)

  1. Submitted by James Hamilton on 11/17/2011 - 10:08 am.

    It’s ironic that a member of the judiciary can be disciplined for failing to confess her misdeeds rather than making the prosecution prove its case. Imagine the outcry if a judge extended a defendant’s sentence because the defendant asserted the 5th Amendment.

  2. Submitted by Lauren Maker on 11/18/2011 - 09:17 am.

    Actually, James, she failed to timely provide information disclosure that a party to a legal proceeding would be required to provide. And they pretty much nailed her with information from other sources, including public documents.

    In the life’s little ironies category, Judge Kerr Karasov was elected in 1994 by defeating sitting Judge Sean Rice, who had been suspended from the bench for unseemly conduct towards his clerks.

    About a month before that primary, the Supreme Court, in a rare move, threw out a murder conviction because of prosecutor misconduct by then prosecutor Patricia Kerr Karasov. But news media did not pick up on that fact, because she practiced law under her family name of Patricia Kerr.

    During the election, Kerr Karasov ran on her strong, get tough trackrecord of prosecuting domestic violence (this was during the OJ trial). Not so much, was the actual report from domestic violence advocates. I personally know of a case where a drunken baby mama sliced up her baby daddy with a beer bottle–and Judge Kerr Karasov refused to issue him a restraining order because he’s a guy and can take care of himself.

    For all you judge wanna-bes that don’t know the governor, Judge Kerr Karasov should be up for re-election in 2012.

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