SF Supreme Court Judge Jerome Benson to retire Jan. 20

San Francisco Superior Court Judge Jerome Benson announced Tuesday he will retire on Jan. 20 after 22 years on the bench.

Benson, 72, a former prosecutor, spent much of his judicial career presiding over criminal trials.

He was initially appointed to San Francisco Superior Court by Gov. George Deukmejian in January 1990. But after six months in office, he was defeated in an election for the post in June 1990 by Donna Hitchens, who became the nation's first elected openly lesbian judge.

Deukmejian then tapped Benson a second time in December 1990, this time appointing him to San Francisco Municipal Court. When the municipal and superior courts merged in 1998, Benson became a Superior Court judge again.

Benson said in a statement, “I leave my judicial office knowing that San Francisco enjoys an excellent trial court bench with strong and experienced judges.”

Presiding Judge Katherine Feinstein said, “Judge Benson has been a reliable mainstay at the Hall of Justice. I will miss his leadership and his stature among his peers, and the confidence he inspired in others as he dispensed justice at the Hall.”

Benson graduated from Stanford University Law School in 1964 and then worked for three years as a law clerk to several judges.

He joined the San Francisco District Attorney's Office in 1967, rising to become chief of the agency's criminal division during the last seven years before he was appointed to the bench.

The San Francisco Superior Court is made up of 52 judges. Upon Benson's retirement next month, the court will have three vacancies, which can be filled by Gov. Jerry Brown.

Bay Area NewsLocalSan FranciscoSan Francisco Superior Court

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

PG&E is locked in a battle with San Francisco city officials over the cost of connecting city projects using public power to the grid.<ins> (Courtesy photo)</ins>
SF challenges PG&E’s power moves

Utility uses expensive hookups to discourage public power use

Mayor London Breed said The City would pause reopening plans in order to “make sure we continue our cautious and deliberate approach.” <ins>(Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
SF slows down reopening after COVID-19 cases rise

Restaurants no longer permitted to increase indoor dining capacity to 50 percent

Toilet (Shutterstock)
Table salt and poop: Testing for COVID-19 in S.F. sewage

The City’s sewers could provide an early warning of fresh outbreaks

A study published in the December 2016 Scientific Reports journal reveals that brain activity increases when people’s political beliefs are challenged. <ins>(Screenshot Scientific Reports)</ins>
Now is the time to make friends with enemies

We can be civil to others who have different political beliefs

Most Read