Archive | Disqualification of judge

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Draggin’ Y Cattle Company, Inc. v. Addink

Draggin’ Y Cattle Company, Inc. v. Addink, 2016 MT 98 (May 3, 2016) (Baker, J.; Rice, J., concurring; McKinnon, J., concurring & dissenting; McGrath, C.J. & Wheat, J., recused themselves) (5-0, appeal dismissed)

Issue: Whether New York Marine timely raised its disqualification claim, and if so, whether the claim should be considered on the merits given that the judge did not disclose circumstances that could cause the judge’s impartiality to be reasonably questioned.

Short Answer: Under these circumstances, the claim is not waived. The Court holds Judge Huss had a duty to disclose but declines to determine whether Judge Huss should have been disqualified for cause. It remands for determination of the disqualification issue by a district judge it will assign.…

State v. Dunsmore

State v. Dunsmore, 2015 MT 108 (April 21, 2015) (Shea, J.) (5-0, aff’d)

Issue: Whether the district court’s failure to recuse himself violated Dunsmore’s right to a fair tribunal.

Short Answer: No.


Facts: Dunsmore was charged with failure to register as a sex offender and theft, both felonies. Dunsmore entered into a plea agreement that recommended a 10-year sentence to the DOC with all 10 years suspended. The presentence investigation (PSI) concluded Dunsmore was not fit for community supervision and recommended a sentence of 10 years in MSP with five years suspended. Judge Robert Allison presided over the case. Prior to becoming a judge, Allison represented Dunsmore’s daughter in a case in which Dunsmore was accused of incest with the daughter Allison represented.…