Albany County judge, DA separated
Jan 20, 2020 12:43 am
Robert Gavin reports for the Times Union that, though no one was explaining why, Albany County Court Judge William Carter was barred Jan. 16 from ruling on criminal matters brought by the office of Albany County District Attorney David Soares. State court officials would not say why Carter was reassigned, only saying it was not a suspension. "Judge Carter is still handling criminal matters but cannot handle any matters that are brought by the Albany County District Attorney. He will be assisting in other counties with criminal matters and will handle matters in Albany that do not involve the District Attorney’s Office," Lucian Chalfen, a spokesman for the state's Unified Court System, said. Carter and Soares are both Democrats, but have disagreed over the years. Carter was upset about Soares' decision not to prosecute minor charges against Occupy Albany protesters in 2013. The Court of Appeals sided with Soares in a legal dispute of the case, and then-Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman said there was a "personal issue back and forth" between Soares and Carter. In 2006, the Commission on Judicial Conduct censured Carter for taking off his robes and glasses and confronting a defendant, saying, "You want a piece of me?" Soares, meanwhile, said he will run for re-election in 2020, seeking his fifth term. Read more about this story in the Times Union.