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The Honorable Richard W. Roberts

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Information about The Honorable Richard W. Roberts

Profile image of The Honorable Richard W. Roberts

Profession

Category:
LawMakers
Occupation(s):
Federal District Court Judge
Lawyer

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Red
Favorite Food:
Lasagna (Meat)
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Caribbean
Favorite Quote:
Keep The Faith.

Birthplace

Born:
6/21/1953
Birth Location:
New York, New York

Profession

Category:
LawMakers
Occupation(s):
Federal District Court Judge
Lawyer

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Red
Favorite Food:
Lasagna (Meat)
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Caribbean
Favorite Quote:
Keep The Faith.

Birthplace

Born:
6/21/1953
Birth Location:
New York
See how The Honorable Richard W. Roberts is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

United States District Court Judge Richard Warren Roberts was born in New York City. Roberts graduated cum laude with an A.B. degree from Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York. In 1983, Roberts was a founding member of the Washington chapter of Concerned Black Men, Inc. and served as the deputy general counsel of the organization. In 1978, Roberts received his Masters of International Administration degree from the School for International Training in Brattleboro, Vermont. That same year, he received his J.D. degree from Columbia University.

From 1978 until 1982, Roberts served as a trial attorney in the criminal section of the Civil Rights Division for the United States Department of Justice. As a federal prosecutor, Roberts successfully prosecuted several high profile cases, including the killing of two Salt Lake City joggers in a racially motivated sniper attack. The offender, Joseph Paul Franklin, was a serial killer who was suspected of killing as many as twenty people between 1977 and 1980. Roberts’s conviction led to Franklin’s confession of various assassination attempts including magazine publisher Larry Flynt, and the 1980 shooting of Vernon E. Jordan, Jr. Roberts worked in private practice in Washington, D.C. from 1982 to 1986 and as Assistant U.S. Attorney for the southern district of New York from 1986 to 1988. Roberts returned to Washington, D.C. in 1988, and worked for the U.S. Attorney’s Office until 1995. In 1990, at the age of thirty-seven, Roberts prosecuted then Washington, D.C. Mayor Marion Barry for violating federal narcotics laws. Mayor Barry had been arrested in a sting operation at the Vista Hotel by the FBI and Washington, D.C. police for crack cocaine use and possession.

After working as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Washington, D.C., in 1993, Roberts was appointed by U.S. Attorney Eric Holder as the principal Assistant U.S. Attorney, serving as second-in-command of the office. In 1995, Roberts was named chief of the criminal section of the Civil Rights Division by the United States Justice Department.

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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of The Honorable Richard W. Roberts' interview, session 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his mother's family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls his maternal great uncle, pt. 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls his maternal great uncle, pt. 2
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his mother's upbringing
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers his maternal uncle, Theodore Tynes
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers his paternal uncle, Morris Harrison Tynes
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls his maternal family's musical talent
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his maternal aunt's musical career
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers visiting his aunt in Europe, pt. 1
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers visiting his aunt in Europe, pt. 2
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts talks about the Agricultural and Technical College of North Carolina
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his father's family background
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts talks about his father's high school education
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his father's education at Benedict College in Columbia, South Carolina
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts talks about his father's graduate studies at New York University
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his parents' relationship and professions
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - The Honorable Richard Roberts talks about his paternal grandfather's photography studio
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - The Honorable Richard Roberts describes how his paternal grandfather learned photography
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - The Honorable Richard Roberts recalls the publication of his paternal grandfather's photographs
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - The Honorable Richard Roberts describes his paternal grandfather's photographs
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - The Honorable Richard Roberts remembers his paternal aunts and uncles
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - The Honorable Richard Roberts describes his parents' careers
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - The Honorable Richard Roberts remembers his father's work ethic
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - The Honorable Richard Roberts describes his parents' personalities and who he takes after
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - The Honorable Richard Roberts describes his earliest childhood memory
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood, pt. 1
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood, pt. 2
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls moving to Queens, New York
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his neighborhood in Queens, New York, pt. 1
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his neighborhood in Queens, New York, pt. 2
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers his early education
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls being bused to J.H.S. 202 in Queen, New York
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts talks about the importance of multicultural education
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers his father's activism
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his parents' commitment to education
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls the influence of his music teacher
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers his high school biology teacher
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his early aspirations
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers the Civil Rights Movement
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers his involvement in sports
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls the semiannual concert at the High School of Music and Art
  • Tape: 5 Story: 9 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers applying to college
  • Tape: 6 Story: 1 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls applying to Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York
  • Tape: 6 Story: 2 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his experiences at Vassar College
  • Tape: 6 Story: 3 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls studying at Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey
  • Tape: 6 Story: 4 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts talks about his major at Vassar College
  • Tape: 6 Story: 5 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers Angela Davis
  • Tape: 6 Story: 6 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts talks about African liberation movements
  • Tape: 6 Story: 7 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers the School for International Training Graduate Institute in Brattleboro, Vermont
  • Tape: 6 Story: 8 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts reflects upon his trip to Africa
  • Tape: 7 Story: 1 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts talks about the Congress of Afrikan People
  • Tape: 7 Story: 2 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls the political tensions in Kenya, pt. 1
  • Tape: 7 Story: 3 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls the political tensions in Kenya, pt. 2
  • Tape: 7 Story: 4 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls his decision to attend Columbia Law School in New York City
  • Tape: 7 Story: 5 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls his orientation at Columbia Law School
  • Tape: 7 Story: 6 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his first year at Columbia Law School
  • Tape: 7 Story: 7 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls developing an interest in public service
  • Tape: 7 Story: 8 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers his third year at Columbia Law School
  • Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Slating of The Honorable Richard W. Roberts' interview, session 2
  • Tape: 8 Story: 2 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls his studies at Columbia Law School in New York City
  • Tape: 8 Story: 3 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his master's degree program
  • Tape: 8 Story: 4 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers joining the U.S. Department of Justice
  • Tape: 8 Story: 5 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls prosecuting Joseph Paul Franklin, pt. 1
  • Tape: 8 Story: 6 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls prosecuting Joseph Paul Franklin, pt. 2
  • Tape: 8 Story: 7 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers the conviction of Joseph Paul Franklin
  • Tape: 8 Story: 8 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls prosecuting slavery cases, pt. 1
  • Tape: 8 Story: 9 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls prosecuting slavery cases, pt. 2
  • Tape: 8 Story: 10 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers prosecuting Robert Allan Carr, pt. 1
  • Tape: 9 Story: 1 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers prosecuting Robert Allan Carr, pt. 2
  • Tape: 9 Story: 2 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers his first case as a prosecutor
  • Tape: 9 Story: 3 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes the caseload of the U.S. Department of Justice
  • Tape: 9 Story: 4 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls joining the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York
  • Tape: 9 Story: 5 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls his decision to return to Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 9 Story: 6 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls the case against Mayor Marion Barry, pt. 1
  • Tape: 9 Story: 7 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls the case against Mayor Marion Barry, pt. 2
  • Tape: 9 Story: 8 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes the undercover operation against Mayor Marion Barry
  • Tape: 9 Story: 9 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers prosecuting Mayor Marion Barry
  • Tape: 9 Story: 10 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts talks about Eric H. Holder, Jr.
  • Tape: 10 Story: 1 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls leading the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia
  • Tape: 10 Story: 2 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls investigating discrimination in the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
  • Tape: 10 Story: 3 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his role in the Rodney King case
  • Tape: 10 Story: 4 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls his appointment as a federal judge
  • Tape: 10 Story: 5 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts remembers a campaign finance fraud case
  • Tape: 10 Story: 6 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls a sexual harassment case in the D.C. Department of Corrections, pt. 1
  • Tape: 10 Story: 7 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts recalls a sexual harassment case in the D.C. Department of Corrections, pt. 2
  • Tape: 10 Story: 8 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts talks about the success rate of employment discrimination cases
  • Tape: 10 Story: 9 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his judicial philosophy
  • Tape: 10 Story: 10 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community
  • Tape: 10 Story: 11 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts reflects upon his life
  • Tape: 11 Story: 1 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts reflects upon his legacy
  • Tape: 11 Story: 2 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes his judicial role models
  • Tape: 11 Story: 3 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts reflects upon his family, pt. 1
  • Tape: 11 Story: 4 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts reflects upon his family, pt. 2
  • Tape: 11 Story: 5 - The Honorable Richard W. Roberts describes how he would like to be remembered