Washington County Circuit Court Judge W. Kennedy Boone lll has been ordered by the Maryland Judicial Commission on Disabilities to take blood-alcohol tests twice daily to insure that he’s not intoxicated while presiding over court cases.
The commission’s job is to investigate complaints about the behavior of judges, and looks into matters of mental or physical illness, senility, and alcohol or drug abuse.
In Judge Boone’s case, he was involved in a car accident in which he hit a young woman who had a baby in the car. Although the baby was not injured, the woman received minor neck and back injuries. Boone’s blood-alcohol level was .18 at the time, more than twice the legal limit.
Owing in part to some previous questionable behavior on the bench, including calling three black female public defenders “The Supremes,” and telling their client to get “an experienced male attorney,” it appears that the commission had more than casual reason to believe that the drinking incident was not isolated.
Now, each morning before beginning work, and after he returns from lunch, the judge is required to take the blood-alcohol tests.
Critics are wondering just how difficult it is to find prospective judges in Maryland that don’t have to be tested twice per day to make sure that they are sober while hearing cases.