United States District Court for the Southern District of California

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United States District Court for the Southern District of California
(S.D. Cal.)
Appeals to Ninth Circuit
Established August 5, 1886
Judges assigned 13
Chief judge Barry Ted Moskowitz
U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy
Official site
Edward J. Schwartz Courthouse San Diego, California

The United States District Court for the Southern District of California (in case citations, S.D. Cal.) is the federal district court whose jurisdiction comprises the following counties in California: Imperial and San Diego.[1] In terms of filed indictments, it is one of the busiest criminal districts in the United States.[2] Cases from the Southern District of California are appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (except for patent claims and claims against the U.S. government under the Tucker Act, which are appealed to the Federal Circuit). The current United States Attorney is Laura E. Duffy[3]

U.S. District Courthouse El Centro, California

History[edit]

California was admitted as a state on September 9, 1850, and was initially divided into two districts, the Northern and the Southern, by Act of Congress approved September 28, 1850, 9 Stat. 521.[4] The boundary line was at the 37th parallel of North Latitude.[5] The creating act provided that:

In addition to the ordinary jurisdiction and powers of a District Court of the United States, with which the Southern District Court of New York has been invested, the said Courts be and hereby are invested respectively within the limits of its district with the exercise of concurrent jurisdiction and power in all civil cases now exercised by the Circuit Courts of the United States; and that in all cases where said Courts shall exercise such jurisdiction, appeals may be taken from the judgments, orders or decrees of said Courts to the Supreme Court of the United States.

The Act of August 31, 1852 made the Judge of the Northern District be Judge of the Southern District as well until otherwise provided, by 10 Stat. 76, 84,[4] effectively creating a single District in all but name until an Act of January 18, 1854 provided for the appointment of a Judge for the Southern District.[5] The Southern District of California was abolished and the State made to constitute a single district – the United States District Court for the District of California – by Act of Congress approved July 27, 1866, 14 Stat. 300.[4][5]

Twenty years later, on August 5, 1886, Congress re-created the Southern District of California by 24 Stat. 308.[5] Erskine M. Ross was appointed Judge of the new district and served until his promotion to the Circuit Judgeship, when he was succeeded by Olin Wellborn.[5] On March 18, 1966, the Eastern and Central Districts were created from portions of the Northern and Southern Districts by 80 Stat. 75.[4]

New Courthouse Complex[edit]

New Federal Courthouse Complex, San Diego, California

On August 25, 2006, Judges of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California hosted a ceremonial ribbon-cutting to recognize elected officials who helped obtain funding for a new federal courthouse in downtown San Diego.

The event was held on the future site of the new courthouse, a 2¼ acre parcel of land west of the existing Jacob Weinberger U.S. Courthouse. The site was formerly occupied by an aging residential hotel, which was brought down by implosion. The new courthouse is now completed and open for service.

The new courthouse stands 16 stories tall with about 380,000 square feet (35,000 m2) of space. It houses 14 courtrooms and judicial chambers for 20 judges, including resident judges of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. The courthouse also provides offices for the district clerk, U.S. Marshals Service and U.S. Pretrial Services.

Current judges[edit]

# Title Judge Duty station Born Term of service Appointed by
Active Chief Senior
53 Chief Judge Barry Ted Moskowitz San Diego 1950 1995–present 2012–present Clinton
50 District Judge Marilyn L. Huff San Diego 1951 1991–present 1998–2005 G.H.W. Bush
57 District Judge Larry Alan Burns San Diego 1954 2003–present G.W. Bush
58 District Judge Dana Makoto Sabraw San Diego 1958 2003–present G.W. Bush
59 District Judge William Q. Hayes San Diego 1956 2003–present G.W. Bush
60 District Judge John A. Houston San Diego 1952 2003–present G.W. Bush
61 District Judge Roger T. Benitez San Diego 1950 2004–present G.W. Bush
62 District Judge Janis Lynn Sammartino San Diego 1950 2007–present G.W. Bush
63 District Judge Michael M. Anello San Diego 1943 2008–present G.W. Bush
64 District Judge Anthony J. Battaglia San Diego 1949 2011–present Obama
65 District Judge Cathy Ann Bencivengo San Diego 1958 2012–present Obama
66 District Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel San Diego 1953 2012–present Obama
67 District Judge Cynthia Ann Bashant San Diego 1960 2014–present Obama
41 Senior Judge Gordon Thompson, Jr. San Diego 1929 1970–1994 1984–1991 1994–present Nixon
44 Senior Judge William Benner Enright San Diego 1925 1972–1990 1990–present Nixon
54 Senior Judge Jeffrey T. Miller San Diego 1943 1997–2010 2010–present Clinton
55 Senior Judge Thomas J. Whelan San Diego 1940 1998–2010 2010–present Clinton
56 Senior Judge M. James Lorenz San Diego 1935 1999–2009 2009–present Clinton

Former judges[edit]

# Judge State Born/Died Active service Chief Judge Senior status Appointed by Reason for
termination
1 Jones, James McHallJames McHall Jones CA 1823–1851 1850–1851 Fillmore, Fillmore death
2 Hoffman, Jr., OgdenOgden Hoffman, Jr. CA 1822–1891 1852[6]–1854 Fillmore, Fillmore reassignment
3 Ogier, Isaac Stockton KeithIsaac Stockton Keith Ogier CA 1819–1861 1854–1861 Pierce, Pierce death
4 Haight, Fletcher MathewsFletcher Mathews Haight CA 1799–1866 1861–1866 Lincoln, Lincoln death
5 Ross, Erskine MayoErskine Mayo Ross CA 1845–1928 1887–1895 Cleveland, Cleveland reappointment
6 Wellborn, OlinOlin Wellborn CA 1843–1921 1895–1915 Cleveland, Cleveland retirement
7 Bledsoe, Benjamin FranklinBenjamin Franklin Bledsoe CA 1874–1938 1914–1925 Wilson, Wilson resignation
8 Trippet, Oscar A.Oscar A. Trippet CA 1856–1923 1915–1923 Wilson, Wilson death
9 James, William P.William P. James CA 1870–1940 1923–1940 Harding, Harding death
10 McCormick, Paul JohnPaul John McCormick CA 1879–1960 1924–1951 1948–1951 1951–1960 Coolidge, Coolidge death
11 Henning, Edward J.Edward J. Henning CA 1868–1937 1925–1929 Coolidge, Coolidge resignation
12 Cosgrave, GeorgeGeorge Cosgrave CA 1870–1945 1930–1940 1940–1945 Hoover, Hoover death
13 Hollzer, Harry AaronHarry Aaron Hollzer CA 1880–1946 1931–1946 Hoover, Hoover death
14 Stephens, Sr., Albert LeeAlbert Lee Stephens, Sr. CA 1874–1965 1935–1937 Roosevelt, F.F. Roosevelt reappointment
15 Yankwich, Leon ReneLeon Rene Yankwich CA 1888–1975 1935–1964 1951–1959 1964–1966 Roosevelt, F.F. Roosevelt reassignment
16 Jenney, Ralph E.Ralph E. Jenney CA 1883–1945 1937–1945 Roosevelt, F.F. Roosevelt death
17 Beaumont, Campbell EbenCampbell Eben Beaumont CA 1883–1954 1939–1954 Roosevelt, F.F. Roosevelt death
18 Harrison, BenjaminBenjamin Harrison CA 1888–1960 1940–1960 1959 Roosevelt, F.F. Roosevelt death
19 O'Connor, James Francis ThaddeusJames Francis Thaddeus O'Connor CA 1886–1949 1940–1949 Roosevelt, F.F. Roosevelt death
20 Hall, Peirson MitchellPeirson Mitchell Hall CA 1894–1979 1942–1966 1959–1964 Roosevelt, F.F. Roosevelt reassignment
21 Mathes, William CareyWilliam Carey Mathes CA 1899–1967 1945–1965 1964–1965 1965–1967 Truman, Truman death
22 Weinberger, JacobJacob Weinberger CA 1882–1974 1946–1958 1958–1974 Truman, Truman death
23 Carter, James MarshallJames Marshall Carter CA 1904–1979 1949–1967 1966–1967 Truman, Truman reappointment
24 Westover, Harry ClayHarry Clay Westover CA 1894–1983 1949–1965 1965–1983 Truman, Truman death
25 Byrne Sr., William MatthewWilliam Matthew Byrne Sr. CA 1896–1974 1950–1966 1965–1966 1966 Truman, Truman reassignment
26 Tolin, Ernest AllenErnest Allen Tolin CA 1904–1961 1951[7]–1961 Truman, Truman death
27 Jertberg, Gilbert H.Gilbert H. Jertberg CA 1897–1973 1955–1958 Eisenhower, Eisenhower reappointment
28 Clarke, ThurmondThurmond Clarke CA 1902–1971 1955–1966 1966 Eisenhower, Eisenhower reassignment
29 Kunzel, FredFred Kunzel CA 1901–1969 1959–1969 1967–1969 Eisenhower, Eisenhower death
30 Crocker, Myron DonovanMyron Donovan Crocker CA 1915–2010 1959–1966 Eisenhower, Eisenhower reassignment
31 Stephens, Jr., Albert LeeAlbert Lee Stephens, Jr. CA 1913–2001 1961–1966 Kennedy, Kennedy reassignment
32 Carr, Charles HardyCharles Hardy Carr CA 1903–1976 1962–1966 Kennedy, Kennedy reassignment
33 Curtis Jr., Jesse WilliamJesse William Curtis Jr. CA 1905–2008 1962–1966 Kennedy, Kennedy reassignment
34 Crary, Elisha AveryElisha Avery Crary CA 1905–1978 1962–1966 Kennedy, Kennedy reassignment
35 Whelan, Francis C.Francis C. Whelan CA 1907–1991 1964–1966 Johnson, L.L. Johnson reassignment
36 Hill, IrvingIrving Hill CA 1915–1998 1965–1966 Johnson, L.L. Johnson reassignment
37 Hauk, A. AndrewA. Andrew Hauk CA 1912–2004 1966 Johnson, L.L. Johnson reassignment
38 Gray, William PercivalWilliam Percival Gray CA 1912–1992 1966 Johnson, L.L. Johnson reassignment
39 Schwartz, Edward JosephEdward Joseph Schwartz CA 1912–2000 1968–1982 1969–1982 1982–2000 Johnson, L.L. Johnson death
40 Turrentine, Howard BoydHoward Boyd Turrentine CA 1914–2010 1970–1984 1982–1984 1984–2010 Nixon death
42 Wallace, John CliffordJohn Clifford Wallace CA 1928–present 1970–1972 Nixon, Nixon reappointment
43 Nielsen, Leland ChrisLeland Chris Nielsen CA 1919–1999 1971–1985 1985–1999 Nixon, Nixon death
45 Keep, JudithJudith Keep CA 1944–2004 1980–2004 1991–1998 Carter, Carter death
46 Gilliam, Earl BenEarl Ben Gilliam CA 1931–2001 1980–1993 1993–2001 Carter, Carter death
47 Irving, J. LawrenceJ. Lawrence Irving CA 1935–present 1982–1990 Reagan, Reagan resignation
48 Rudi M. Brewster CA 1932–2012 1984–1998 1998–2012 Reagan death
49 Rhoades, Sr., John SkylsteadJohn Skylstead Rhoades, Sr. CA 1925–2007 1985–1995 1995–2007 Reagan, Reagan death
51 Gonzalez, Irma ElsaIrma Elsa Gonzalez CA 1948-present 1992–2013 2005–2012 2013 G.H.W. Bush retirement
52 Jones Jr., Napoleon A.Napoleon A. Jones Jr. CA 1940–2009 1994–2007 2007–2009 Clinton, Clinton death

Succession of seats[edit]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Southern District of California – Jurisdiction.
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ "Office of the United States Attorneys". Executive Office for United States Attorneys. United States Department of Justice. Retrieved 25 January 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c d U.S. District Courts of California, Legislative history, Federal Judicial Center.
  5. ^ a b c d e Willoughby Rodman, History of the Bench and Bar of Southern California (1909), p. 46.
  6. ^ Initially appointed to the Northern District of California in 1851 by Millard Fillmore; Act of August 31, 1852 made the judge of the Northern District be judge of the Southern District as well.
  7. ^ Recess appointment; formally nominated on March 3, 1952, confirmed by the United States Senate on June 10, 1952, and received commission on June 11, 1952.

External links[edit]