On Friday, June 30, 2023, the Maryland Commission on Judicial Disabilities reprimanded St. Mary’s County Orphans’ Court Judge Michael R. White following a reprimand hearing on June 26, 2023, where the Commission concluded that White committed sanctionable conduct.

The case is titled “In the Matter of The Honorable Michael R. White,” case no. CJD 2022-023.

The charges cited the Maryland Code of Judicial Conduct Rules 18-101.1 (Compliance with the Law), 18-101.2(a) (Promoting Confidence in the Judiciary), 18-102.16 (Cooperation with Disciplinary Authorities), and 18-103.15 (Reporting Requirements).

The Maryland Code of Judicial Conduct can be found here.

According to the court document, the Commission found that White demonstrated reluctance and a lack of cooperation with disciplinary authorities. This behavior needlessly prolonged and extended the investigation carried out by the Investigative Counsel. Additionally, White submitted financial disclosure statements that contained inaccuracies.

The Investigative Counsel’s findings revealed that Judge White lacked candor and credibility during a deposition, as he consistently failed to provide truthful and honest responses under oath, particularly when it came to acknowledging his own signature on various documents. Despite numerous instances where Judge White was asked to verify his signature, he repeatedly responded with “I don’t know.”

However, upon review, the Commission determined that the Investigative Counsel did not present clear and convincing evidence to establish that Judge White’s conduct during the proceedings was deserving of disciplinary action.

Accordingly, the Commission further concluded that the sanctionable conduct was not so serious, offensive, or repetitious to justify the filing of charges and that a reprimand is an appropriate disposition under the circumstances.

Judge Michael R. White’s courtroom is at 41605 Court House Drive, Leonardtown, MD, and can be reached at (301) 475-5566.

A copy of the original filing can be found here.