Canadian judge wears "Make America Great Again" hat in courtroom

Canadian judge wears "Make America Great Again" hat in courtroom
Posted at 8:47 AM, Sep 13, 2017

A Canadian judge who wore a "Make America Great Again" baseball cap in his courtroom has been suspended for 30 days without pay.

A panel investigated complaints made about Ontario Justice Bernd Zabel stemming from an incident in November of 2016.  The panel found that the judge wore the baseball camp into his courtroom, made comments about the U.S. presidential election, and also commented on his political views, as well as those of other judges.  The panel also found that when the judge gave a public statement about that day in court, his comments were not consistent with what had happened.

The panel hearing was held August 23rd, and the panel received 81 letters of complaint.  Panel members also reviewed a number of other items, including an Agreed Statement of Facts, in which Judge Zabel admitted he "engaged in judicial misconduct".  On September 11th, 2017, the panel determined there was judicial misconduct, and suspended the judge for 30 days without pay.  It's the most serious sanction permitted by law short of removing the judge from office.