William Caldwell

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William Caldwell
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Current Court Information:
United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania
Title:   Senior Judge
Position:   Seat #3T
Station:   Harrisburg, PA
Service:
Appointed by:   Ronald Reagan
Active:   03/19/1982 - 05/30/1994
Senior:   05/31/1994 - Present
Preceded by:   Robert Herman
Succeeded by:   James Munley
Past post:   Dauphin County Court of Common Pleas, Judge
Past term:   1970 - 1982
Personal History
Born:   1925
Hometown:   Harrisburg, PA
Undergraduate:   Dickinson College, A.B., 1948
Law School:   Dickinson Law, LL.B., 1951
Military service:   U.S. Army 1944-1945
William W. Caldwell is a federal judge for the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. He joined the court in 1982 after being nominated by President Ronald Reagan. He is serving on senior status.

Early life and education

Born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Caldwell graduated from Dickinson College with his bachelor's degree in 1948 and his law degree in 1951.

Caldwell served in the United States Army Air Corps from 1944 to 1945.[1]

Professional career

Caldwell was a private practice attorney in the State of Pennsylvania from 1951 to 1970 and served as an Assistant District Attorney for Dauphin County from 1960 to 1962. From 1963 to 1970, Caldwell served as General Counsel and Chairman for the Pennsylvania Board of Arbitration of Claims. From 1970 until appointment to the federal bench in 1982, Caldwell was a Judge for the Dauphin County Court of Common Pleas.[1]

Judicial career

Middle District of Pennsylvania

On the recommendation of U.S. Senators Arlen Specter and John Heinz III, Caldwell was nominated to the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania by President Ronald Reagan on February 19, 1982, to a seat vacated by Robert Dixon Herman as Herman assumed senior status. Caldwell was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on March 18, 1982, on a Senate vote and received commission on March 19, 1982. He assumed senior status on May 31, 1994.[1]

Notable cases

Leader of "Felony Lane Gang" sentenced for crime spree (2014)

     United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania (U.S. v. Russ)

On March 19, 2014, Senior Judge Caldwell sentenced Travis J. Russ to almost sixteen years in prison for his participation as the leader of the "Felony Lane Gang," a group of thieves who wreaked havoc upon patrons of national state parks, stealing more than $1 million. Russ served as leader of the gang during a five-year crime spree involving car break-ins, identity theft, and bank fraud. From August to October 2012, the gang stole from more than 100 people in Pennsylvania state parks before being caught. Six other gang members were sentenced prior to Russ, with the next highest sentence after Russ's being that of forty-six months in federal prison.[2][3]

Millions owed after fatal tractor trailer crash (2014)

     United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania (Claxton, et al v. Singh and PVR Transport, 1:11-cv-00714-WWC)

On January 6, 2014, Senior Judge Caldwell issued a verdict, ordering that the defendants pay more than $2.1 million in compensatory and punitive damages to the plaintiff. In the underlying case, Eric Claxton, the driver of a tractor trailer, crashed into Sukhwinder Singh's tractor trailer after Singh pulled onto the highway without using flashers or checking for traffic. Claxton and his passenger died after suffering severe burns in the fatal crash. Claxton's wife, Kamilah Claxton, sued both the driver of the tractor trailer and his employer, Sukhchan Singh (doing business as PVR Transport), alleging negligence, vicarious liability, and wrongful death. Claxton filed an unopposed motion for summary judgment in the case, and Caldwell granted it following a bench trial in November 2013, finding that "both defendants acted with wanton and reckless indifference toward decedent." In a separate verdict, Caldwell ordered that the defendants pay Claxton $2 million for lost wages, $100,000 for pain and suffering, and $1,290.50 for estate administration fees. Caldwell also ordered that the defendants pay Claxton $100,000 in punitive damages.[4][5]

See also

External links

References

Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Robert Herman
Middle District of Pennsylvania
1982–1994
Seat #3T
Succeeded by:
James Munley


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