Onondaga family court judge resigns after inappropriate behavior charge

New York News

ONONDAGA COUNTY, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Onondaga Family Court Judge and acting Supreme Court Justice Michael Hanuszczak has resigned after being charged with inappropriate behavior toward two female court staff.

In a statement released Monday by the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct, Hanuszczak is accused of uninvited, unwelcome kissing, and otherwise inappropriate behavior. He resigned and agreed not to seek or accept judicial office in the future.

“The relationship between judge and court staff is not equal. The power inherent in judicial office must not be exploited for personal purposes.  Obviously, a judge should not initiate unwelcome kissing of court staff or propose ‘discreet’ dating to a subordinate.  Had he not resigned, my office would have recommended Judge Hanuszczak’s removal for such disreputable behavior,” said a statement released by commission administrator, Robert Tembeckjian.

Judge Hanuszczak was served with a Formal Written Complaint dated March 8, 2019, stating “one charge alleging that between 2011 and 2017 he engaged in a pattern of improper, inappropriate and unwelcome personal interactions with two female court staff”.

Reports of inappropriate behavior also include asking to have a discreet relationship, dating, and other inappropriate comments.

Judge Hanuszczak had been a Judge of the Family Court since 2001, and an Acting Justice of the Supreme Court since 2004.  His current term would have ended on December 31, 2020.

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