Alabama judge who called 77-year-old state Governor ‘Gov MeMaw’ and used mock Asian accent suspended


Alabama judge who used mock Asian accent in courtroom and called 77-year-old state Governor ‘Gov MeMaw’ is suspended and charged

  • Mobile County’s 13th Circuit Judge James T. Patterson was suspended in June
  • He was charged Wednesday with an inappropriate demanor for his temperament and for his abuse of judicial authority
  • The state’s Judicial Inquiry Commission accused him of violating judicial ethics with remarks about GOP Governor Kay Ivey, 77, and repeated profanity in court
  • Patterson also made an inappropriate remark about court attendees being able to speak English when he saw a potential juror who looked to be of Asian descent
  • Patterson quickly apologized to the jury pool for the remark and also apologized to Alabama’s Governor, calling his remarks a ‘poor attempt at humor’

An Alabama judge who belittled the state’s governor over her age and gender and used a mock Asian accent in front of a jury pool was suspended from court duty and charged. 

Mobile County Circuit Judge James T. Patterson was suspended on June 24 after the Judicial Inquiry Commission, which investigates complaints against judges, accused him of violating judicial ethics with a string of remarks about Republican Governor Kay Ivey and repeated profanity in court. 

A judge since 2017, Patterson is a Republican who has referred to his remarks as bad jokes. He was charged twice Wednesday by the state’s judicial commission: one of them being an inappropriate demeanor for his temperament, and the other being an abuse of judicial authority, according to NBC 15 News.

Patterson referred to the 77-year-old Ivey as ‘Gov. MeMaw,’ a disparaging term used by some critics, in an order complaining about her decision to make most people remain at home during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, the commission alleged. 

He also regularly used profanity while presiding over court sessions and in written orders, a complaint filed on June 15 reports. 

Investigators said Patterson made an inappropriate remark about everyone in court being able to speak English when he saw a potential juror who appeared to be of Asian descent.

It remains unknown who the jury member was.

Mobile County Circuit Judge James T. Patterson (pictured) was charged on Wednesday with an inappropriate demeanor for his temperament and for abusing his judicial authority following allegations that he cursed at other judges, court staff, attorneys, defendants and jury pool members over the last few years

Mobile County Circuit Judge James T. Patterson (pictured) was charged on Wednesday with an inappropriate demeanor for his temperament and for abusing his judicial authority following allegations that he cursed at other judges, court staff, attorneys, defendants and jury pool members over the last few years

One one occasion, Patterson belittled Alabama's Governor Kay Ivey over her age, calling her 'Governor MeMaw' in reaction to a stay-at-home COVID order issued before apologizing and refering to his bad joke as a 'poor attempt at humor in the midst of this Covid-19 mess'

One one occasion, Patterson belittled Alabama’s Governor Kay Ivey over her age, calling her ‘Governor MeMaw’ in reaction to a stay-at-home COVID order issued before apologizing and refering to his bad joke as a ‘poor attempt at humor in the midst of this Covid-19 mess’

Patterson also made an inappropriate remark about everyone in court being able to speak English when he saw a potential juror who appeared to be of Asian descent

Patterson also made an inappropriate remark about everyone in court being able to speak English when he saw a potential juror who appeared to be of Asian descent

Patterson quickly apologized to the jury pool for the remark, which he called a ‘stupid, stupid joke,’ and subsequently denied any racism in a public post on social media.

‘The liberals call everyone they disagree with a racist nowadays. I am nothing of the kind,’ Patterson wrote in 2019, according to the commission’s complaint. He defended his repeated use of ‘dead a— broke’ to refer to Alabama’s underfunded court system, saying he has led the fight to increase funding.

Patterson apologized to Ivey in a letter in which he said his ‘Gov. MeMaw’ remark ‘was a poor attempt at humor in the midst of this Covid-19 mess,’ but continued using the term in reference to Ivey in discussions with lawyers, investigators found.

In another unrelated incident, Patterson referred to another judge as a ‘G*d d*mn snowflake,’ much to the shock of lawyers and court staff who heard the slang.

On a separate occasion,the tempered judge rattled a defendant’s mother to have a fit, according to NBC 15 News. 

In another unrelated incident at the 13 judicial Circuit Court of Alabama, Patterson called another judge a 'G*d d*mn snowflake,' suprising court staff and attorneys who witnessed the moment

In another unrelated incident at the 13 judicial Circuit Court of Alabama, Patterson called another judge a ‘G*d d*mn snowflake,’ suprising court staff and attorneys who witnessed the moment

The allegations against Patterson’s authority in court goes back to 2018 when the 13th Judicial Circuit was facing financial troubles. 

The complaint filed against the judge in June states Patterson considered suing the circuit court clerk’s office, so that he could stop sending local fees to the state until the courthouse was equipped with financial aid. 

‘It’s frankly starting to impact public safety. I for one intend to do something about it,’ Patterson told NBC 15 News at the time, regarding the issue.

The Alabama Supreme Court concluded in May 2019 that Patterson had overstepped his legal authority in his attempt to receive more funding for the courthouse.

Patterson hasn’t submitted a response to the commission charges, which were first filed last month.

DailyMail.com has contacted the judge for comment. 

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