Lawyer Sworn In as Judge After He Admits Smoking Pot

United Press International

A lawyer was sworn in as a Superior Court judge on Friday, a day after admitting to a legislative committee that he once smoked a small amount of marijuana.

Judge Sidney Axelrod, 56, said Gov. William A. O'Neill was "courageous" for continuing with the nomination despite his knowledge of the past marijuana use.

"He could have avoided it completely," said Axelrod, whose appointment to the eight-year term is considered interim until he is approved by the Legislature.

Axelrod told a judical screening committee that he used marijuana two or three times about 12 years ago, when he was a lawyer. He said he never bought the drug and was ashamed of using it.

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