A controversial Bronx judge infamous for letting accused killers free on the streets is searching for a giant promotion, The Post has realized.
Soft-on-crime Judge Naita Semaj, of the county Supreme Court, is making use of to turn into the presiding justice overseeing all disputed prison and civil circumstances in Manhattan and the Bronx, sources conversant in the deliberations stated.
The publish on the Appellate Division, First Department, is without doubt one of the most influential and prestigious within the New York State court docket system.
Cases heard by the appeals court docket contain violent avenue crimes, in addition to white collar, authorities and commerce offenses and large ticket divorces.
In the function, Semaj — who just lately released without bail a parolee charged with strangling his stepson to demise — would oversee disciplinary committees and character health panels for legal professionals.
The presiding justice sits on a robust board overseeing the state Office of Court Administration.
Just weeks in the past, Semaj added insult to harm within the case of Tyresse Minter’s alleged killing of 15-year-old Corde Scott — berating grieving mom Karen Glenn for displaying up late to the arraignment simply earlier than refusing to set bail for the boy’s accused killer, releasing him.
Glenn on Wednesday slammed Semaj for in search of a promotion, whereas saying she wasn’t stunned the brazen, lenient jurist would try such a transfer.
“I don’t know what she’s attempting to do with the job she has now on the subject of critical crimes. In my son’s case, she heard all of the issues that occurred after which she stated, `No bail,’” Glenn instructed The Post.
“And there are not any repercussions for her. She doesn’t care. She does what she desires to do,” Glenn continued.
“So am I stunned she put in for this high judge place? No!”
Victims’ rights advocates had been additionally outraged that Semaj might be thought-about for a bump of any variety — not to mention to such a robust place.
“Every prison conviction goes to be overturned,” fumed Jennifer Harrison, founding father of the Victims Right NY political motion committee.
“Judge Semaj ought to be faraway from the bench, not promoted,” stated Harrison, whose boyfriend Kevin Davis was stabbed to demise outdoors a New Jersey nightclub in 2005.
State Sen. Anthony Palumbo (R-Suffolk), the rating Republican on the judiciary committee that oversees judicial nominations agreed.
“Semaj has some moxie in search of a promotion after what she did in that murder case,” Palumbo stated.
“She is somebody who ought to be faraway from the bench for lack of judgment.”
Sources conversant in the choice course of stated Semaj just lately submitted her identify for consideration for the publish with Gov. Kathy Hochul’s First Department Judicial Screening Committee.
Other candidates embrace Diane Renwick, who’s the appearing presiding justice for the First Department and the spouse of former Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson, in addition to Troy Webber, an affiliate justice within the First Department.
All three candidates, black ladies, are anticipated to be interviewed by the judicial screening committee on Friday, sources stated.
“She’s bought numerous nerve making use of for the place. It’s wonderful,” a supply conversant in the assessment stated of Semaj.
Hochul’s workplace declined to remark, citing the confidential screening course of.
But the governor — in a transparent rebuke of Semaj — had Minter, 28, re-arrested after the judge launched him with out bail within the alleged chokehold homicide of his stepson.
“My high precedence is public security,” Hochul stated in an announcement on April 6.
Retired Queens prosecutor James Quinn deadpanned of Semaj’s brazen request for a promotion: “At least it will get her out of doing arraignments.”
Semaj has beforehand drawn outrage for her criminal-friendly selections, even as soon as drawing a rebuke from Mayor Eric Adams for going straightforward on a teen accused of capturing a cop.
Last April, she additionally enraged the family of 21-year-old Saikou Koma when she reduce free his alleged killer, Bronx gangbanger Steven Mendez.
And in February 2022, she cut loose two teenage criminals — together with one charged with homicide — over the objection of the Bronx District Attorney’s Office.
“There’s no manner the governor can nominate her as a presiding justice. She would injury all credibility,” stated Quinn.
“This is loopy,” the ex-prosecutor added.
“This is ‘in your face’ on her half. She’s saying, ‘You suppose what I did was unhealthy. I believe I ought to be promoted.’
Semaj, who has Jamaican roots, has sturdy ties to the Bronx Democratic Party institution.
She donated two contributions totaling $650 to the Bronx Democratic Party in July 2018.
The party machine largely controls who will get on the poll for judgeship.
She additionally donated $250 in 2016 to Assemblyman Michael Benedetto and $100 to Ritchie Torres in 2013, the previous Bronx councilman turned congressman.
Semaj didn’t return a name to her workplace Wednesday for remark about her bid for promotion.