NEW YORK — A federal appeals panel on Friday denied a request by lawyers for New York City that it overturn a judge’s sweeping ruling on the Police Department’s stop-and-frisk practices on grounds that her impartiality had been called into question.
In August, the judge, Shira A. Scheindlin of US District Court in Manhattan, found constitutional violations in the practices and imposed remedies, including the appointment of a monitor. Last month, the appeals panel blocked those orders and removed Scheindlin from the case, saying that by steering the litigation to her courtroom in 2007 and giving press interviews this past spring while the case was pending, she had compromised “the appearance of impartiality surrounding this litigation.”
In a more recent opinion, the panel, from the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, said it had not found any misconduct or ethical violation by the judge. But it stopped her ruling from taking effect while the city appealed it.
The city sought to have the ruling vacated, but Friday the appeals court declined the request, saying that the appeal process should run its course. The appeals court added that the city could renew its request later as part of the full appeal.
The city’s request was a strategic one. While Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg disagrees with Scheindlin’s ruling, Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio does not. De Blasio has promised to withdraw the appeal when he takes office in January, which would mean the steps Scheindlin ordered would likely go into effect.