Fourth Judicial District - District Court Judge
Honorable Thomas Kelly Kane
Retention Year: 2014
Recommendation: Meets Performance Standard
The Fourth Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance unanimously recommends, by a vote of 8-0, that Judge Thomas Kelly Kane BE RETAINED.
Judge Kane was appointed to the District Court bench in September 1994. Prior to his appointment, Judge Kane was a partner in a Colorado Springs law firm that focused primarily on insurance defense litigation. Judge Kane received his undergraduate degree and his law degree from University of Colorado. He has been active in many community service activities, and since his appointment he has demonstrated his commitment to community service by volunteering as a Teen Court judge and Mock Trial Competition judge, participating on legal education panels for lawyers, high school students, and hosting leadership groups.
The Commission conducted a personal interview with Judge Kane, reviewed opinions he authored, observed him in court, and reviewed surveys sent to attorneys and non-attorneys. Among the survey questions was “how strongly do you recommend that Judge Kane be retained in office, or not be retained in office?” 101 attorneys and 259 non-attorneys responded to the survey. Among attorneys, 90% recommended Judge Kane be retained, 6% recommended that he not be retained, and 3% made no recommendation regarding retention. Among non-attorneys, 94% recommended that he be retained, 1% recommended that he not be retained, and 6% made no recommendation regarding retention. (These percentages may not total 100% due to rounding). Among non-attorneys and attorneys, Judge Kane consistently had above average scores in all areas, including demeanor, communication skills, and diligence.
Among non-attorneys, Judge Kane had high scores for neutrality in his handling of criminal cases, with 91% believing he was “completely neutral”, 6% believing he was biased in favor of the defense, and 5% believing he was biased in favor of the prosecution. Among attorneys surveyed regarding Judge Kane’s handling of criminal cases, 50% believed he was completely neutral, 15% believed he was biased in favor of the defense, and 35% believed he was biased in favor of the prosecution. Judge Kane has presided over civil cases and criminal cases since 2008. Based on the survey results, Judge Kane received an overall combined average rating which exceeded the average combined rating of all district judges standing for retention.