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Judge Lewis Quoted on Wecht Case

On October 15, 2006 by Schnader in News

On September 19, 2006, Judge Timothy Lewis was quoted in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article “U.S. Appeals Court Freezes Wecht’s Trial.” The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has stayed the criminal trial of former Allegheny County Coroner Dr. Cyril H. Wecht pending its decision on whether the judge hearing the case should be removed. “Issuing a stay in the trial proceedings is the right thing to do to be fair to all the parties involved,” Judge Lewis opined. “That said, this is not by any means a tip of the hand they’re going to rule in favor of Wecht. It’s an indication only that they have not found it to be a frivolous matter, and they’re considering it seriously.”

And on October 15, 2006, Judge Lewis was again quoted in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article “Recusal Means New Start in Wecht Case?” The article discussed the potential removal of United States District Judge Arthur J. Schwab in the case against Wecht. Wecht’s defense attorneys have alleged that Judge Schwab had improper, secret communication with the government’s lawyers, and that he has shown bias in rulings against Wecht. Other allegations include that Judge Schwab improperly reviewed potential evidence on his own to reach a ruling, and that he has stopped defense attorneys from zealously defending Wecht. In commenting on the case, Judge Lewis noted that, “no federal judge should or would do that,” Judge Lewis said. “No federal judge should ever, ever, ever allow their personal feelings or slights in any way interfere with future rulings.”