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Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin. Photo by Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe

Coughlin not ruling out impeachment for Silva, Troiano

Speaker waiting for conclusion of judiciary probe

By Nikita Biryukov, July 16 2019 4:03 pm

Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin isn’t ruling out impeachment proceedings against two embattled judges, but his chamber won’t make any moves on the issue until after the Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct finishes its probe into the pair.

“Currently, the ACJC is conducting an investigation and the Speaker is going to allow that process to take place,” said Liza Acevedo, Coughlin’s spokeswoman. “We anticipate this investigation to be concluded in short order. Pending the outcome of the ACJC probe, the Speaker will determine if further action is warranted and would consider all available options.”

Judge James Troiano refused to try as an adult a 16-year-old boy accused of raping 16-year-old girl and sending a videotape of the assault to his friends as an adult over worries that that doing so would imperil the alleged rapist’s future.

Judge Marcia Silva refused to try a 16-year-old boy accused of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl as an adult, ruling that the victim suffered no emotional, mental or physical harm past the loss of her virginity.

Both decisions were later overturned by appeals courts.

Troiano is retired and was recalled for a two-year stint by Chief Justice Stuart Rabner.  Silva is not tenured and her term ends in January 2021.

In all, 21 legislators have called for judicial removal, including Coughlin, Senate President Steve Sweeney and Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg.

Gov. Phil Murphy has condemned the judges’ comments but stopped short of calling for their resignation.

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