Police: Judge attempted suicide

Fulton County Family Court Judge David F. Jung was transported to St. Mary’s Hospital in Amsterdam S

Fulton County Family Court Judge David F. Jung was transported to St. Mary’s Hospital in Amsterdam Sunday night after state police responded to a report of a possible “suicidal subject.”

A state police official said troopers were dispatched to Jung’s Canada Lake residence about 10:30 p.m. after a family member called. The official said troopers learned that Jung had taken sleeping pills.

The incident followed a Feb. 19 decision by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct removing Jung from office for violating the rights of five litigants in his court during 2005.

His attorney, Vincent Capasso Jr. of Schenectady, announced Feb. 20 that Jung would appeal to the Court of Appeals.

But, a friend said Jung was despondent last week after the decision was released.

When state police arrived at Jung’s house Sunday night, a family friend was present and told troopers a note left by Jung was burned before troopers arrived, the official said.

Capasso could not be reached Monday for comment about Sunday’s incident, but the day after the commission ruling he said: “Judge Jung has been a competent, caring and conscientious jurist for nearly two decades.” He said Jung has always acted “within the color, letter and authority of the law.”

The commission ruling was sharply critical of Jung’s decisions to send parties to jail for contempt— either in absentia or without legal representation, or both.

“In considering the appropriate sanction,” the commission decision said, “we note that as a consequence of [Jung’s] disregard of fundamental rights, five litigants were sentenced to significant terms of incarceration, and the record indicates that at least three of those litigants served several months in jail on the unlawful sentence he imposed.”

The panel noted Jung’s “continued insistence that his actions were consistent with law and his insensitivity to the overriding importance of protecting the rights of litigants    as shown by his record, strongly suggest that if he is allowed to continue on the bench we may expect more of the same.”

State Supreme Court judges released four of those litigants after habeas corpus petitions were filed.

Categories: Schenectady County

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