Last edited: January 01, 2005

Judicial Panel Rejects Bias Complaint Against Alabama Justice Who Called Homosexuality ‘Inherent Evil’!

Associated Press, March 21, 2002

By Jay Reeves

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—A judicial panel has dismissed a bias complaint against state Chief Justice Roy Moore, who called homosexuality an "inherent evil" in ruling that a lesbian was an unfit mother.

The gay rights group Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund had filed a petition alleging Moore’s comments showed he could not be an impartial judge.

The statement issued Thursday by the Judicial Inquiry Commission said it "found no reasonable basis to charge a violation of the Alabama Canons of Judicial Ethics."

The Supreme Court on Feb. 15 gave custody of three teen-agers to their father in Birmingham instead of their mother—a lesbian who lives with her partner in California.

Moore, writing for the court, said the mother’s relationship made her an unfit parent and that homosexuality is "abhorrent, immoral, detestable, a crime against nature, and a violation of the laws of nature."

Moore’s attorney, Stephen Melchior, said the panel "did the right thing" in clearing the chief justice, a conservative Christian best known for hanging a plaque of the Ten Commandments in court.

A lawyer for the gay rights group, Ruth Harlow, said the commission sent the group a letter saying it does not act against judges for statements made in opinions unless there is evidence of "ill will."

"We don’t agree with the explanation," she said.

As a circuit judge in Etowah County, Moore in 1996 cited homosexuality in refusing to award a lesbian custody of her children. An appeals court later ordered him to step aside from the case after the woman complained Moore couldn’t be fair because of his religious beliefs.

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