CLEVELAND, OH - The Ohio Supreme Court has suspended the law license of controversial Cleveland Municipal Court Judge Angela Stokes. According to the ruling from the high court, Judge Stokes has “engaged in conduct that violates the Ohio Rules of Professional Conduct, the Ohio Code of Professional Responsibility, the Ohio Code of Judicial Conduct, and poses a substantial threat of serious harm to the public and the administration of justice.”
The ruling indicates that for the time being, Stokes is not allowed to practice law in any capacity or act as a judge.
Angela Stokes is a member of one of Cleveland's most powerful and influential political families. However, the daughter of former U.S. Congressman Louis Stokes, and niece of former Cleveland Mayor Carl Stokes, has become more well-known for her outbursts in the courtroom, than her contributions as a public servant.
Video from inside her courtroom, showed the judge berating attorneys and defendants for asking questions, and placing some of them in holding cells, for minor infractions ranging from talking in court to making facial expressions.
After receiving dozens of complaints about Judge Stokes, the court's administrative judge banned Stokes from hearing criminal cases in March.
Her judicial temperament was also the focus of an investigation by the Ohio Disciplinary Counsel's Office, which included testimony from attorneys who felt the wrath of Judge Stokes and concluded it was unwarranted and unprofessional. It was in response to those findings, that the State Supreme Court suspended her law license.
Fox 8 attempted to reach Angela Stokes and her attorney for comment, but they have not returned our calls. Judge Stokes, who can appeal the ruling, will be the focus of a disciplinary hearing before the Supreme Court In February.