John Keenan

From Judgepedia
Jump to: navigation, search
John Keenan
Placeholder image.png
Do you have a photo that could go here? Submit it for this profile by emailing us!
Current Court Information:
United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
Title:   Senior Judge
Position:   Seat #17
Station:   New York, NY
Service:
Appointed by:   Ronald Reagan
Active:   09/20/1983 - 12/30/1996
Senior:   12/31/1996 - Present
Preceded by:   Lloyd MacMahon
Succeeded by:   Colleen McMahon
Personal History
Born:   1929
Hometown:   New York, NY
Undergraduate:   Manhattan College, B.B.A., 1951
Law School:   Fordham U. Law, LL.B., 1954
Military service:   U.S. Army 1954 - 1956

John Fontaine Keenan is a federal judge for the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. He joined the court in 1983 after being nominated by President Ronald Reagan. He is serving on senior status.

Early life and education

Born in New York, New York, Keenan graduated from Manhattan College with his bachelor's degree in 1951 and later from Fordham University Law School with his Bachelor in Laws degree in 1954.[1]

Professional career

Keenan served in the United States Army from 1954 to 1956. He was Assistant District Attorney for New York County, New York from 1956 to 1976. During that time, Judge Keenan was in charge of New York County's Supreme Court Bureau from 1968-1969, and later in charge of the Homicide Bureau from 1970 to 1973.

Judge Keenan served as Chief Assistant District Attorney of Queens County New York in 1973, and then Assistant District Attorney in charge of trials for New York County in 1974. Thereafter, he was appointed to serve as Chief Assistant District Attorney for New York County from 1974 to 1976. As New York State Deputy Attorney General, Keenan served as a Special Prosecutor in charge of the Anti-Corruption Division from 1976 to 1979.

From 1979 to 1982, he was Chairman and President of the New York City Off-Track Betting Corporation. Immediately prior to his appointment as a federal judge, Keenan was the Criminal Justice Coordinator for New York City from 1982 to 1983.[1]

Judicial career

Southern District of New York

On the recommendation of U.S. Senator Al D'Amato, Keenan was nominated to the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York by President Ronald Reagan on September 13, 1983 to a seat vacated by Lloyd MacMahon. Keenan was confirmed by the Senate on September 20, 1983 on a Senate vote and received commission on September 20, 1983. Keenan assumed senior status on December 31, 1996.[1]

Notable cases

Merck's Fosamax allegedly causes disability (2013)

     United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (Scheinberg v. Merck & Co, Inc., No. 08 Civ. 4119(JFK))

Judge Keenan presided over a 'mass action' or multi-district litigation suit involving the osteoporosis drug Fosamax, manufactured by Merck & Co. Over 900 plaintiffs have filed suit against Merck in federal and state court, alleging generally that the use of their drug Fosamax can cause a condition known as osteonecrosis, which destroys the jaw, and that Merck failed to give proper warnings of this risk. Many of these actions have been consolidated in the case before Judge Keenan.[2]

The judge also presided over individual actions before the cases were consolidated. On September 8, 2009, Judge Keenan gave the jury more time to deliberate after they were deadlocked after one of the trials. He dismissed another in November of 2009. On January 29, 2010, he refused to dismiss another and ordered that it will go to trial. Thus far, Merck has won two of three cases that have gone to trial so far, not counting the one which was dismissed.[3][4]

In February of 2011, Keenan issued an order saying he needs to hear two more bellwether (test) cases before deciding on whether to send the cases that remain back to the original courts they were filed in. The judge stated that he needs to hear a case involving a person taking the drug before Merck updated its label in July of 2005 to reflect the risk of osteonecrosis, and where that person claims they developed problems with their jaw after the change. The other case the judge said he needs to hear first is one involving a person who used the drug after the label change and developed the jaw problems.[2] On February 5, 2013, a jury ruled against Merck, awarding $285,000 to plaintiff Rhonda Scheinberg.[5] July 1, 2013, Judge Keenan denied a request by Merck to remove the $285,000 payment.[6]

See also

External links

References

Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Lloyd MacMahon
Southern District of New York
1983–1996
Succeeded by:
Colleen McMahon


New YorkUnited States District Court for the Eastern District of New YorkUnited States District Court for the Western District of New YorkUnited States District Court for the Northern District of New YorkUnited States District Court for the Southern District of New YorkUnited States bankruptcy court, Eastern District of New YorkUnited States bankruptcy court, Western District of New YorkUnited States bankruptcy court, Northern District of New YorkUnited States bankruptcy court, Southern District of New YorkUnited States Court of Appeals for the Second CircuitNew York Court of AppealsNew York Supreme Court, Appellate DivisionNew York Supreme CourtNew York County CourtsNew York City CourtsNew York Town and Village CourtsNew York Family CourtsNew York Surrogates' CourtsNew York City Civil CourtNew York City Criminal CourtsNew York Court of ClaimsNew York Problem Solving CourtsNew York countiesNew York judicial newsNew York judicial electionsJudicial selection in New YorkNewYorkTemplate.jpg