Judge Firetog’s last day, a reflection on 35 years of justice
Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Neil Firetog is an example of a kid who knew exactly what he wanted to be. As far back as seventh grade, when he defended a classmate accused of killing the class fish, he always wanted to be a lawyer. Nearly 58 years later, he prepared for his final homicide trial, which ended with a jury bringing in a guilty verdict.
It’s not that the judge wants to step away from the bench. His retirement is much to the chagrin of the waves of prosecutors, defense attorneys, fellow judges and the family he’s created in his courtroom, but at the age of 70 he is forced to step away.
Friday will be his last day as a judge in nearly 35 years.
“In losing Judge Firetog, the Supreme Court loses institutional knowledge and experience that cannot be easily replaced,” said Michael Farkas, immediate past president of the Kings County Criminal Bar Association (KCCBA), former homicide prosecutor and current criminal defender.