Choose and founding father of nation’s second full-time neighborhood courtroom dies at 76

Choose and founding father of nation’s second full-time neighborhood courtroom dies at 76


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By Debra Cassens Weiss
Could 15, 2019, 2:17 pm CDT

A Connecticut decide who based the nation’s second full-time neighborhood courtroom died Sunday in his Hartford residence at age 76.

Choose Raymond Norko died on account of most cancers, the Related Press stories. The Hartford Courant and the Connecticut Legislation Tribune even have obituaries.

Hartford’s neighborhood courtroom, which opened in 1998, was modeled on a neighborhood courtroom that had opened 5 years earlier in New York Metropolis. The Hartford courtroom dealt with low-level quality-of-life offenses, comparable to public consuming and loitering. Defendants typically have been ordered to carry out neighborhood service that might result in erasure of their prison information.

In his retirement letter final yr, Norko stated the neighborhood service was carried out in neighborhoods affected by the defendants’ conduct. The sentences strive “to attach the particular person with a way of belonging and contributing to the neighborhood,” he wrote.

Norko was appointed to the bench in 1985 after a profession in authorized companies. He was appointed in 2011 to chair the state’s Entry to Justice Fee.

Norko acquired the Connecticut Bar Affiliation’s Charles J. Parker Authorized Providers Award in 1985 for his dedication to the supply of authorized companies to deprived individuals. Final yr, Norko acquired the Franklin N. Flaschner Award for excellent decide in a specialised courtroom. The award is given by the ABA Judicial Division’s Nationwide Convention of Specialised Courtroom Judges.

Chris Pleasanton, program supervisor with courtroom operations for Connecticut, instructed the Connecticut Legislation Tribune that the neighborhood courtroom was essential to Norko and the defendants who appeared earlier than him.

“He was the soul of the courtroom and, for my part, nonetheless is,” Pleasanton stated. “He knew individuals’s names, and he’d discuss to them. He knew the conditions of most of the defendants and handled them with an amazing quantity of respect. Regardless that he was the decide, the general public who went earlier than him thought they have been handled pretty and with integrity.”



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