A judge has found a unique way to avoid being impeached, but that won’t keep her out of trouble.
Originally published at WND News Center. Used with permission.
A family court judge in West Virginia, facing impeachment for her outlandish behavior on the bench, has retired.
But that still won’t prevent her from facing her own judgment day.
Officials with the Institute for Justice have confirmed that Louise Goldston, who used to be assigned to the state’s Family Court, has quit her position.
Her decision came just as the state legislature was pushing to impeach her for violating the rights of West Virginians.
“The resolution to impeach Goldston specifically mentions the judge leading a warrantless search of the home of Institute for Justice client Matt Gibson. Despite her retirement, Matt and IJ will continue moving forward with their lawsuit against Goldston,” the IJ confirmed.
Tori Clark, a lawyer with the IJ, said, “The West Virginia Legislature has done the right thing in this case, but Americans cannot and should not have to depend on legislative grace to ensure that judges follow the Constitution. Judge Goldston’s retirement is a good first step, but this lawsuit must continue to move forward so we can ensure that Matt and others who are wronged by unconstitutional judicial conduct can vindicate their rights in court.”
Goldston went off the rails in March 2020 when she “stopped a court proceeding between Matt and his ex-wife, ordered everyone in the courtroom to go to Matt’s home, and led a warrantless search party through the home.”
The IJ explained its client, Matt, tried to stop her by telling her should could not enter without a search warrant, and she said, on video, “Oh yeah, I will.”
At that time Goldston ordered Matt’s former wife to take anything from the home that she thought was hers.
Multiple ethics charges soon were filed against the judge, and she was censured and fined by the state Supreme Court of Appeals.
Then Matt brought his lawsuit for violating his rights.
“The judge argued that she should be entitled to judicial immunity and that Matt’s claims against her should be thrown out,” the IJ said, but the district court refused to go along with her agenda.
Matt said, “I’m happy that the corrupt judge is stepping down so she can’t violate other people’s rights like she did to me. But judges aren’t above the law. My case will move forward to ensure that what happened to me does not happen again.”
WND previously reported when the case developed that some of the items taken by the ex-wife, with the judge’s permission, actually belonged to him and his children.