|Alabama Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore|
Virulently anti-LGBT Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore has will spend the remainder of his term suspended from the bench for instructing probate judges in his state to ignore federal laws regarding same-sex marriage.
The ruling comes via the Alabama Court of the Judiciary (COJ).
“For these violations, Chief Justice Moore is hereby suspended from office without pay for the remainder of his term. This suspension is effective immediately,” the order stated. The court found him guilty of all six charges of violation of canon of judicial ethics. Moore was tried Wednesday before the COJ on the six charges that claimed he violated canons of judicial ethics regarding that Jan. 6 administrative order to the state’s 68 probate judges.
Prosecutors said Moore’s order sought to have probate judges defy the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling that declared gay marriage legal nationwide and halt the issuance of marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Moore and one of his attorneys said at the trial that the order was just a status report on the state of a petition that had been pending before the Alabama Supreme Court and did not tell the probate judges to defy federal orders.
The nine-member Court of the Judiciary thought otherwise and issued the sanction. The nine member court had several options – acquit Moore, remove him from the bench, suspend him without pay, or issue a statement of censure expressing disapproval. Removal from the bench required a unanimous decision and any of the other sanctions require a minimum 6-3 vote. Moore can appeal the ruling to the Alabama Supreme Court.
The suspension basically ends Moore's career on the state Supreme Court. He cannot receive any salary, and he cannot weigh in on legal decisions. His current term ends in 2018, and he is unable to run again for Supreme Court office due to age restrictions.
In addition, the COJ ruled he has to pay for the cost of the trial. Here's the signed suspension document: