Alabama
2:04 pm
Thu September 18, 2003

Alabama chief justice seeks more time from court

Montgomery, AL – Suspended Chief Justice Roy Moore is seeking to delay the case that could lead to his removal from the Alabama Supreme Court.

Moore claims he faces a possible "judicial death penalty" after refusing to move a Ten Commandments monument from public property. Moore's lawyers today (Thursday) asked the State Court of the Judiciary to extend the amount of time Moore has to respond to charges that he violated judicial canons by refusing to obey a federal court order to remove the monument from the state judicial building's rotunda.

While disqualified from acting as a judge, Moore is allowed to continue receiving his annual salary of 170-thousand 244 dollars. Moore has said he will ask the U-S- Supreme Court to decide whether his monument can be displayed in the rotunda, and he has a September 29th deadline to file his request for the high court to hear the case.

Moore's lawyer asked the Court of the Judiciary to extend the Monday deadline for his response in the ethics case until after the high court "definitively rules" on Moore's filings. The U-S- Supreme Court could refuse to hear the case, and it could be weeks or months before the high court decides. Moore's attorney -- Jim Wilson -- still says he needs a "reasonable time" to prepare a defense.

Moore was suspended August 22nd after the Judicial Inquiry Commission charged him with six violations of judicial standards for refusing to obey an order by Montgomery federal Judge Myron Thompson.