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Roger Benitez

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Roger Benitez
Roger-Benitez.jpg
Current Court Information:
United States District Court for the Southern District of California
Title:   Judge
Position:   Seat #13
Service:
Appointed by:   George W. Bush
Active:   6/21/2004 - Present
Preceded by:   116 Stat. 1758
Past post:   Federal Magistrate Judge
Past term:   2001 - 2004
Personal History
Born:   1950
Hometown:   Havana, Cuba
Undergraduate:   San Diego State U., B.A., 1974
Law School:   Western State U., J.D., 1978

Roger Benitez is a federal judge in the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. He joined the court in 2004 after being nominated by President George W. Bush.

Early life and education

Born in Cuba turned American Citizen, Benitez graduated from Imperial Valley College with his Associate's degree in 1971 and later graduated from San Diego State with his bachelor's degree in 1974 before graduating with his juris doctorate from Western State in 1978.[1]

Professional career

Benitez spent a majority of his legal career as a private practice attorney licensed in the State of California from 1978 to 1997. Before becoming a Federal judge, Benitez was a Superior Court Judge for the California Superior Court from 1997 to 2001. Benitez also served as a part-time instructor at Imperial Valley College from 1998 to 1999.[1]

Judicial career

Southern District of California

Benitez started his Federal judicial career as a Federal Magistrate judge for the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. Benitez was appointed to a full eight-year term as a Federal magistrate judge in 2001. Benitez served in that role until 2004 when he was elevated to an Article III judgeship.[1]

Benitez was nominated by President George W. Bush on May 1, 2003 to a new judgeship created by 116 Stat. 1758 which was approved by Congress. Burns was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on June 17, 2005 on a supermajority 98-1-1 vote and received commission on June 24, 2004.[2]

Notable cases

Students "Under God": Teacher sues to place religious banners in classroom (2010)

     United States District Court for the Southern District of California ((dead link) Bradley Johnson, v. Poway Unified School District, et al., 3:07-cv-00783-BEN-WVG)

Judge Benitez presided in a District court case where he held that a teacher can have banners that say "One nation under God" and "God shed his grace on thee" in his classroom. Bradley Johnson, a teacher in Poway, California, sued the Poway School District after administrators asked him to take down the banners. The judge made the ruling on the basis that the school district violated Johnson's First Amendment rights.[3] The ruling was later appealed to the Ninth Circuit, where it was reversed.[4]

See also

External links

References

Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
NA-New Seat
Southern District of California
2004–Current
Seat #13
Succeeded by:
NA


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