August 16, 2001
The Honorable Peter DeStefano
Newton County Municipal Court
Post Office Box 550
Jasper, Arkansas 72641
Re: Advisory Opinion # 2001-04
Dear Judge DeStefano:
In your request for an opinion dated July 30, 2001 you asked:
"After a Judge has conducted a trial and convicted a
Defendant of certain charges, can the Judge then testify against
the same Defendant in a subsequent perjury trial concerning
the Defendant's testimony in the first trial?"
In responding we have made the obvious assumption that the
perjury trial is not in your court.
The only provision in the Arkansas Code of Judicial Conduct
that deals directly with a judge testifying in court is Canon
2 B which states in part that "A judge shall not testify
voluntarily as a character witness." Canon 2 A provides
that "A judge shall respect and comply with the law and
shall act at all times in a manner that promotes public confidence
in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary."
If subpoenaed to testify before another court you should simply
abide by the law and by the Arkansas Code of Judicial Conduct.
Very truly yours,
Edwin B. Alderson, Jr.
for the Committee