Is it considered a conflict of interest if the judge who sentences someone personally knows the victims involved?

UPDATED: Dec 27, 2011

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Is it considered a conflict of interest if the judge who sentences someone personally knows the victims involved?

Asked on December 27, 2011 under Criminal Law, Ohio


Russ Pietryga / Pietryga Law Office

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

A judge has to be impartial and objective. Personally knowing the victim, could seriosly compromise both.

Usually, a judge will recuse himself or disclose this fact at the beginning of the proceedings. Unless both parties stipulate to the judge maining on the case, the judge should recuse himself.

Additionally, there ar rrules of criminal procedure that provide guidance on how to recuse a judge.  Anyway, unless both parties waived the conflict a motion to recuse the judge should be filed.


Hope this helps

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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