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Otter names CdA attorney Cynthia Meyer to state 1st District bench

Gov. Butch Otter has named Coeur d’Alene attorney Cynthia K.C. Meyer a state 1st District judge, to replace Judge Benjamin Simpson, who is retiring after 15 years on the bench.  “I believe Cynthia has the right mix of temperament, decisiveness and personal integrity for the bench and I am confident that she will approach her new duties with the same well-reasoned, thoughtful demeanor that exemplified her tenure as a member of the Idaho State Bar,” Otter said in a statement.

Meyer has practiced law in Utah and Idaho since 1987; she’s a graduate of the College of Idaho and the University of Utah College of Law. Her appointment is effective immediately.

Meyer was among four finalists for the judgeship, nominated by the Idaho Judicial Council, which interviews and vets prospective judges and surveys members of the Idaho bar about their qualifications. The other three finalists were Magistrate Judge Scott Wayman; Magistrate Judge Jim Stow; and Post Falls attorney Randall Adams.

Otter appoints Hippler as 4th District judge, passes over Bock

Gov. Butch Otter today appointed Boise attorney Steven Hippler to a new district judge position in the 4th Judicial District. Hippler, 47, has been a partner with Givens Pursley since 2002; click below for the governor's full announcement. In addition to Hippler, the finalists for the judgeship included state Sen. Les Bock, D-Boise; Roger Cockerille; and Jason D. Scott.

Buchanan appointed 1st District judge

Bonner County Magistrate Judge Barbara Buchanan has been appointed a district judge by Gov. Butch Otter, making her the first woman to be appointed to the 1st Judicial District bench. Buchanan, a Sandpoint resident and Moscow native, will be the only district judge serving Bonner and Boundary counties; she replaces Judge Steve Verby, who is moving to senior status. “The Idaho court system is in a period of change," Buchanan said in a statement. "We are embarking on an innovative new program to deliver justice more quickly, efficiently and effectivel.I am excited to be part of that process.”

She has served as a magistrate judge for 18 years and holds law and bachelor's degrees from the University of Idaho; click below for Otter's full announcement.

State judge facing DUI says she’ll retire

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: CALDWELL, Idaho (AP) ― A state judge who is facing a drunken driving charge says she will retire effective Jan. 4. The Idaho Press-Tribune reports 3rd District Judge Renae Hoff has announced her retirement. Seven candidates have submitted applications for the vacant position. Applications are being taken until Nov. 9 by the Idaho Judicial Council. Hoff was arrested and charged with misdemeanor DUI on Aug. 25. She was removed from presiding over criminal cases until her DUI charge is resolved. She pleaded not guilty and her trial is set for Dec. 4. The judicial council is scheduled to meet at the Canyon County Courthouse Dec. 6 to interview the candidates.

Judge fighting DUI charge resigns

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: TWIN FALLS, Idaho (AP) ― Fifth District Magistrate Judge Nicole Cannon has resigned two months after being charged with excessive driving under the influence in Boise. Cannon's resignation was announced Friday in a statement released by 5th District Trial Court administrator Linda Wright. The resignation was effective immediately. She had served on the bench for 15 months. Cannon's resignation announcement made no mention of the DUI charge filed in April. Court records say her blood-alcohol level tested at 0.239 percent and 0.221 percent. A judge denied requests by Cannon's defense attorney to have the traffic stop deemed unreasonable and to throw out the breath tests. Cannon has pleaded not guilty and her trial is set to start on Aug. 28. Wright says recruitment for Cannon's replacement would start Monday.

Trial set for judge facing DUI charge

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: TWIN FALLS, Idaho (AP) ― A trial has been scheduled for a south-central Idaho judge charged with excessive drunken driving in Ada County. The Times-News reports (http://bit.ly/LzR3GJ) Twin Falls County 5th District Magistrate Judge Nicole Cannon has pleaded not guilty to the DUI charge. Her trial is scheduled to being in Idaho's 4th District Court on Aug. 28 in Boise, where she was cited during an April traffic stop. Police say Cannon had a blood alcohol level of nearly three times the legal limit. Fifth Judicial District Court administrator Linda Wright has said Cannon will not hear DUI cases while her own case is pending. In Ada County, several 4th District judges have disqualified themselves from hearing Cannon's case. A judge can choose to seek disqualification if he or she knows the defendant.

Druggists Don’t Have To Sell Plan B

Washington state cannot force pharmacies to sell Plan B or other emergency contraceptives, a federal judge ruled Wednesday, saying the state’s true goal was to suppress religious objections by druggists — not to promote timely access to the medicines for people who need them. U.S. District Judge Ronald Leighton heard closing arguments earlier this month in a lawsuit that claimed state rules violate the constitutional rights of pharmacists by requiring them to dispense such medicine. The state requires pharmacies to dispense any medication for which there is a community need and to stock a representative assortment of drugs needed by their patients/Associated Press. More here. (AP photo of pharmacist Rhonda Mesler, talks to reporters)

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Otter names state PD Molly Huskey to 3rd District judgeship

Gov. Butch Otter has named Molly Huskey, the state's appellate public defender since 2002, to fill a district judge opening in the 3rd Judicial District; click below for Otter's full announcement.