On Monday, October 23, 2023, the Disciplinary Counsel in Michigan filed its objections to the master’s report in the case of Paul J. Cusick, a Wayne County Circuit Court judge. The Disciplinary Counsel raises several concerns regarding the master’s findings and conclusions.
The case is entitled “In the Matter of Paul J. Cusick,” with case no. 104.
The disciplinary counsel argues that the master’s report, which was issued on June 23, 2023, contains several factual and logical errors, and ignores extensive evidence that supports the allegations of misconduct against Judge Cusick. The objections focus on five counts of violations of the Michigan Court Rules, Michigan Rules of Professional Conduct, and the Michigan Code of Judicial Conduct.
The first count alleges that Judge Cusick allowed a witness to testify falsely about their motive to cooperate and limited the scope of questioning to conceal the fact that the witness was cooperating to benefit their boyfriend, a defendant in another case. The disciplinary counsel argues that the master’s report failed to address this issue adequately. The second count alleges that Judge Cusick called the same witness to testify at a subsequent hearing and concealed both their motive to testify and the fact that they had been untruthful previously. The disciplinary counsel contested that the master’s report ignored evidence that supported this allegation.
The third count alleges that Judge Cusick withheld evidence about the same two cooperators in two criminal cases and that he also withheld the evidence from the prosecutor who took over his cases when he left the Attorney General’s office. The disciplinary counsel argues that the master’s report failed to address this issue adequately. The fourth count alleges that Judge Cusick failed to disclose the existence of a res gestae witness and obstructed cross-examination that might have led to identifying him. The disciplinary counsel argues that the master’s report ignored evidence that supported this allegation. The last count, alleges on the other hand, that Judge Cusick made false or misleading statements in his answers to the Commission’s Request for Comments and 28-Day Letter. The disciplinary counsel also argues that the master’s report failed to address this issue adequately.
The disciplinary counsel’s objections highlight the need for a thorough review of the evidence and arguments presented in the case. The objections argue that the master’s report ignored extensive evidence that supported the allegations of misconduct and failed to address several key issues adequately. The objections also argue that the master’s report contained factual and logical errors and ignored the context of the transcripts cited.
The conclusion states:
“For all the reasons stated in this brief, disciplinary counsel asks that the Commission find that the respondent committed misconduct as charged in Counts I-V of the complaint. Based on that finding, disciplinary counsel also asks that the Commission recommend that the Supreme Court remove respondent from office.”
In contrast, Judge Cusick filed his brief in support of the Judicial Tenure Commission’s adoption of the master’s findings and report. The brief states that the evidence is clear that Paul Cusick faithfully executed his duties and responsibilities as an Assistant Attorney General and as a Judge. He was truthful throughout the years-long process.
Moreover, the brief states that as made crystal clear during the proceedings, Judge Cusick always followed office policy whenever there was an agreement with a defendant or witness. That policy was to seek written authorization for and to document the scope and extent of any such agreement and to have that confirmed in writing by the witness/defendant and their counsel.
Judge Paul J. Cusick earned a law degree from Wayne State University. The Judge’s Courtroom is located at 1441 St Antoine, Detroit, MI 48226, and can be reached at (313) 224-2461. His bio can be found on ballotpedia.com.
A copy of the original filing can be found here.