Eighth Judicial District - Larimer County Court Judge
Honorable Peter E. Schoon Jr.
Retention Year: 2006
The Eighth Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance recommends that Judge Peter E. Schoon, Jr. BE RETAINED. The Commission voted eight in favor with two absent.
Judge Schoon received his Juris Doctorate degree from Washburn University of Topeka (Kansas) and his undergraduate degree from Central College (Pella, Iowa). Judge Schoon was appointed to the Larimer County Court on September 2, 2002. Prior to his appointment, Judge Schoon was a lawyer in private practice in Loveland, Colorado with an emphasis in civil law. From 1988-2002, he also served as an Associate Judge of the Loveland Municipal Court.
Judge Schoon’s court handles a mix of traffic/criminal misdemeanor cases and civil cases involving damages under $15,000. Judge Schoon believes that the County Court is often the public’s only contact with the court system. He also believes that it is the judiciary’s role to balance individual rights while promoting individual responsibility in a courteous, competent, and timely manner.
The Commission interviewed representatives from the District Attorney’s office and the Public Defender’s office. The Commission reviewed evaluations of Judge Schoon received from respondents to a professionally conducted survey of both attorneys and non-attorneys who have been in his courtroom. The Commission considered statistical responses as well as written comments dealing with courtesy, impartiality, communications skill, judicial temperament, diligence, application of the law, and retention. Further, the Commission also considered a written self-evaluation completed by the judge and conducted a personal interview with Judge Schoon.
While Judge Schoon tries to provide a less formal and rigid courtroom atmosphere, survey and interview input received by the Commission raised concerns that Judge Schoon’s sense of humor can be misinterpreted and thus detracts from professionalism in the courtroom. Attorneys responding to the survey recommended Judge Schoon be retained by 93%. Eighty-six percent of the non-attorneys responding to the survey also recommended that Judge Schoon be retained. He received high marks from both attorneys and non-attorneys in case management, application and knowledge of the law, communications, and diligence.