Opinion 12-189

June 20, 2013


         This responds to your inquiry (12-189) asking whether you may be employed as an Indian Nation police officer. You indicate that you would wear a uniform clearly marked Nation Police; that you would wear a badge and carry a gun; that your duties would include patrolling Nation properties, taking reports and enforcing tribal law. You further advise that none of the Nation territory is within the jurisdiction of your court and that it is your understanding that the State of New York does not recognize individuals serving in this capacity as “police officers”.

         “The Committee previously has advised that certain employment is incompatible with judicial office, even if it does not confer actual police officer or peace officer status, because the duties to be performed are so closely related, or similar in nature, to law enforcement functions that a judge so employed could not avoid the appearance of impropriety.” (Joint Opinion 09-210/09-228).

         For the same reason, the employment you propose also is incompatible with judicial office.

         I have enclosed Joint Opinion 09-210/09-228 for your convenience.


Very truly yours,




George D. Marlow, Assoc. Justice

Appellate Division, First Dept. (Ret.)

Committee Chair