Long-serving Passaic County Judge Resigns Resignation, Helps Clear Backlog


Passaic County Commissioners said goodbye to Superior Court-appointed Judge Ernest Capocella.

In a proclamation, the county governing body praised Caposela, who will retire at the end of May after more than eight years as mayor of the Passaic district. Still, Capocella’s departure is more of a relocation than a retirement.

In early May, state Supreme Court officials preemptively summoned Mr. Caposela to a two-year provisional sentence to mitigate pending lawsuits, according to a May 8 announcement. His new role includes temporary appointments to superior courts statewide to help implement, maintain and improve criminal justice reform. Launched in 2017, the program introduced risk-based bail reform as part of a revised pretrial framework.

New Jersey Superior Court Appointed Judge Ernest Capocella is seen during a ceremony in which Nadia Karf (not shown) is sworn in as Judge Paterson of the New Jersey Superior Court on Tuesday, March 21, 2023.

New Jersey Chief Justice Stuart Rabner said, “Judge Capocella played a valuable role in the early success of New Jersey’s criminal justice reform, spearheading the first pilot program and inspiring both fellow judges and the public.” It helped me see the benefits,” he said in an April statement about Judge Caposela. Pending his retirement.

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