One of the more accomplished judges in upstate New York is gone.
Putnam County Court Judge James Reitz died of a heart attack while presiding on the bench.
Reitz’s death was a terrible surprise. By all outward signs, he was in great health and was still young at just 57.
He was both well-respected and well-liked by law enforcement officials. Reitz had implemented a drug court program that was emphatically endorsed by local law enforcement.
That’s why when he fell ill and died, it took everyone by surprise and had a deep impact on the local community.
Reitz reportedly felt ill, then apparently asked his court officer for help, but they were unable to resuscitate him.
According to reports, Judge Reitz was presiding over a family law matter when he passed away.
Reitz has only been on the bench since 2007, but he has accomplished more than most during that time. After his passing, more than a few fans remarked that his drug program should be the model used for all courts.
The admiration for the judge was clear as local papers and social media lit up with condolences for the family and stories of the judge.
Putnam County Sherriff Robert L. Langley, Jr. was among those paying tribute.
Judge Reitz was a man who changed people’s lives through his passion for the drug court in which he always had the support and active participation of members from the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office.
We could go on endlessly on Judge Reitz’s accomplishments and passion for serving his community not only as Judge but as a friend to many.
The judge was even lauded on social media by those that came before him in the courtroom. Each and every one of them stated he was fair, which is all we can ask from our judges.
Rest in peace, Judge Reitz.