Houghtaling & Downey Laud Supreme Court Action on Judge Russo

OCEAN TOWNSHIP - Assembly Members Eric Houghtaling and Joann Downey released the following statement in response to an announcement that the New Jersey Supreme Court had concluded the recall to temporary judicial service of Superior Court Judge James Troiano and entered an order to file a complaint for removal from office for Judge John Russo:

“This is an important step forward for survivors of sexual assault across New Jersey, and a clear signal that their voices matter,” said Downey (D-Freehold). “If these judges had been permitted to continue making decisions from the bench, it would create a chilling effect discouraging survivors of sexual assault from coming forward with their stories. While the removal of these two judges is not sufficient to remove the potential for sexism and bias in our judicial system, it makes it clear that New Jersey’s justice system cannot and will not be a home for those who make excuses for rape. Thank you to every survivor and outspoken advocate who has had the courage to step forward on these cases - your efforts have made our justice system fairer, more transparent, and more responsive to the needs of survivors.”

“The removal of these two judges is essential if we want to preserve the integrity of our judicial system,” said Houghtaling (D-Neptune). “Judge Troiano made the right decision in resigning, and I hope that Judge Russo recognizes the importance in doing the same. Survivors of sexual assault need to have faith in our courts, and today’s decisions will go a long way toward restoring the trust that these judges lost.”

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