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John “Jack” Quatman, whose claims of jury bias against Jews rocked the Alameda County, Calif., district attorney’s office, “is dishonest and unethical,” a judge found Tuesday. In a report to the California Supreme Court, Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Kevin Murphy said Quatman lied when he said he removed jurors because they were Jewish and when he said he did so at the direction of then-Alameda County Judge Stanley Golde. Murphy found “ample evidence” that Quatman made up his story to exact revenge on DA Tom Orloff who transferred the longtime prosecutor from capital cases in 1993. “People do act according to their character, and for that reason, John Quatman’s allegations about Judge Golde can’t be believed,” Murphy concluded. Quatman testified last month in an evidentiary hearing in the habeas corpus case of Fred Freeman, a convicted murderer that Quatman prosecuted in 1987. In a declaration filed with the California Supreme Court two years ago, Quatman said Golde told him he “could not have a Jew” on Freeman’s jury. He also said that excluding Jews and black women from juries in capital punishment cases was “standard practice” in Alameda County. After the Supreme Court appointed Murphy to investigate Quatman’s claims, Chief Assistant Attorney General George Williamson unleashed a brutal attack on Quatman’s character, calling former colleagues who testified last month that the 25-year prosecutor routinely lied and cheated to win verdicts. Murphy sided with those witnesses, writing in his report in In re Fred Freeman, S122590, that he found Quatman’s allegations about Golde not only untrue, but that Quatman “never noted that any of the three jurors in question � were Jewish” and had ranked those jurors “zero, four and three, respectively, before exercising peremptory challenges.” Quatman had previously testified that he used a 10-point rating system where more desirable jurors were rated with a six or above. A spokesman for the attorney general’s office, which represented the state in the hearing after Murphy found the Alameda County DA had a conflict of interest, said he wasn’t surprised by Murphy’s findings. “What was alleged was a clear violation of the defendant’s constitutional rights, and that gives the attorney general enormous concern,” spokesman Nathan Barankin said. “But as the facts and the evidence produced before the referee demonstrate, there just was no violation that occurred.” Murphy was asked two questions by the Supreme Court: Did Golde advise Quatman to kick Jews off Freeman’s jury, and did Quatman use peremptory challenges at trial for that purpose? Murphy found the answer was “no” on both counts. Scott Kauffman, the California Appellate Project attorney to whom Quatman mentioned the Golde incident casually over dinner, said Tuesday he “felt bad” for Quatman. “This is a personal conversation that we had, that he gave me permission to talk to [Freeman's attorneys], and it’s turned into this circus,” Kauffman said. “You know, [Murphy's finding] surprised me, and I think it’s too bad,” he said. “I knew what the circumstances were. � There’s no question in my mind that it’s true.” Freeman’s attorney, Gary Sowards of the Habeas Corpus Resource Center, did not return a call seeking comment. District Attorney Tom Orloff was out of town and would not be available for comment until today, his secretary said. In his closing arguments in the evidentiary hearing, Williamson suggested Quatman, now in private practice in Whitefish, Mont., made the allegations to get revenge against the DA who transferred him off capital cases in 1993 for a less glamorous assignment. Several people testified that Quatman hated Orloff for disciplining him after he referred to fellow prosecutor Terese Drabec as a “lazy cunt.” Murphy also made findings of fact involving one of the witnesses, Carol Corrigan, a former senior deputy DA and now a First District Court of Appeal justice. Murphy found Corrigan hadn’t had an improper ex parte discussion with Golde, as another witness had claimed. But Larry Gibbs, a Berkeley attorney who has presented evidence that he says shows Jews were routinely kept off Alameda County juries in capital trials between 1984 and 1994, thinks the judge was far too restrictive. “The report deals only with what Judge Golde told Quatman on a particular date and in a particular case,” Gibbs said. “It does not address the broader question on whether the Alameda County district attorney’s office systematically excluded Jews from capital juries.” “I believe he foreordained the outcome,” Gibbs said.

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