Judge of the Day

Judge of the Day: Bankruptcy Judge Needs Family Law Refresher Course

James Peck wife beater.jpgJudge James M. Peck has received two plum assignments. He’s been handling the Lehman bankruptcy and is overseeing the liquidation of Bernie Madoff’s investment firm.

Some people have been hoping that Peck would lay the smack down on these companies; maybe the federal judge just became horribly confused about his responsibilities:

Bankruptcy Judge James Peck, 63, was charged with attempted second-degree assault and harassment following a Saturday-afternoon tiff with his wife, Judith, 64.

Peck isn’t exactly claiming innocence. Instead, he went straight to “self defense”:

Peck allegedly told police that the blowup began over his wife’s late arrival at the house from the Hamptons, where she’d been earlier in the week.

Peck said his wife slapped him first, as he was taking a ladder out of his closet.

“She slapped me,” the judge told police, according to the sources. “I put the ladder down. I slapped her. Then we started slapping each other back and forth.”

“Slapping each other back and forth.” Are we talking about domestic violence, or a Family Guy episode?

More tidbits from Judge (small) Peck after the jump.


When Judge Peck was assigned the Lehman case, media outlets reacted with incredulity. Bloomberg News expressed it this way:

Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.’s case was randomly assigned to U.S. Bankruptcy Judge James Peck, second in tenure, putting the fate of $613 billion in claims before a judge whose largest case since going on the bench in January 2006 was the $3 billion reorganization of Quebecor Corp.

Peck received his J.D. from NYU and was a partner in Schulte Roth’s strong restructuring practice, back in the nineties.

But two high profile cases is bound to cause some stress isn’t it?

“We’ve been married 42 years,” the judge told cops who arrived at the tony building following a 911 call by Judith Peck, according to the sources.

“We love each other very much. I have never hit her before. This was not about tonight.”

Apparently, it wasn’t about 42 years of loving marriage either was it Mr. Peck?

No word on what became of Peck’s ladder after his altercation. But the judge might want to check out Ladders online. You know, just in case the “she started it” defense fails to persuade an ethics committee.

MADOFF’S JUDGE HIT WIFE: COPS [NY Post]

Lehman Brothers/Madoff Judge Charged With Assault [Dealbreaker]

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