King County Washington Judge, in Children’s Hospital Case, Alleged to Have Conflict of Interest


Ken Schubert, King County Superior Court


A King County Superior Court Judge in the Children’s Hospital case that resulted in six deaths failed to disclose a critical conflict of interest, according to a prominent appellate attorney.

Judge Ken Schubert had previously allowed lawyers for the hospital to unlawfully seal court files, in an effort to cover up evidence of mold contamination. Because of the assigned judges’ conflict, advocates for the victims are calling for both an investigation and his resignation.

After increasing pressure from the international media exposure, the public, lawsuits, and families of the victims, in a televised statement Judge Schubert nervously stated that he had “second thoughts” about his previous ruling to prohibit public review of the file.

Unknown at the time was Judge Schubert’s close ties to the law firm representing Children’s Hospital. Schubert had been previously employed at the law firm Garvey Schubert, one of the two law firms that recently merged to form the firm Foster Garvey according to Schubert’s own filing with the Washington State Public Disclosure Commission.

“Children’s Hospital engaged in a 15-year cover up of the deadly mold that killed six children and seriously injured eight more,” said John Scannell, a Ninth Circuit Appellate attorney. “There was at least one prior whistleblower complaint filed with the government. Children’s Hospital then hired a law firm, Foster Garvey, with close ties to the Judge. Children’s directed attorneys Adrian Winder and Andrea Bradford of Foster Garvey to sue the press to prevent the exposure of the guilty parties. Schubert allowed it. Sealing the file prevented the victim’s access to the evidence and a fair public trial,” he said. “This is absolutely inexcusable and a basic violation of Schubert’s most basic duty as a judge and trusted public official.”

“In addition to Judge Schubert’s prior employment at the law firm Garvey Schubert, there is another serious question of conflict that needs to be answered. Did the estate of Judge Schubert’s late father, Ken Schubert, Sr., the founder of Garvey Schubert, convey to his son Judge Ken Schubert, Jr. a direct or indirect ownership interest in the firm Foster Garvey – the same law firm now representing Children’s Hospital?” said Mr. Scannell.

“This is an astonishing and blatant example of arrogance on the part of the hospital, their attorneys and law firm, as well as the judge to think they could get away with hiding the facts of the case by sealing the file and denying justice to the victims. Schubert only changed his mind and opened the file because he was caught by the press. It’s that simple.”

“Judge Schubert is now the subject of multiple complaints to the Commission on Judicial Conduct, retroactive investigations of his prior cases, and several calls for his resignation,” according to Mr. Scannell.

“If Schubert isn’t immediately removed from the bench, we can all stop pretending we live under the rule of law,” said Mr. Scannell. “This is absolutely outrageous.”

Judge Schubert has refused comment.



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