Retired Judge Joseph Wapner, who presided over one of the first courtroom reality television shows “The People’s Court”, died on Sunday, February 26, 2017. He was 97.
“The People’s Court” hit the airways in September, 1981. He sat on the bench of “The People’s Court” for a total of 2,484 episodes until 1993. Judge Wapner heard thousands of cases during his 12-year run on that show. Due to low ratings, “The People’s Court” was canceled in 1993. It was revived for a second run in September 1997 without Wapner. Before becoming a TV judge, Wapner served as an Los Angeles County Superior Court judge for 20 years.
Wapner was hospitalized last week with breathing problems. His condition worsened and he was taken to his West Los Angeles home on Friday under hospice care.
Judge Wapner is survived by his wife Mickey. The two have been married for 70 years. He has 3 children.
To read more about Judge Wapner, here is his Wikipedia page.
Here is a video from “The People’s Court” in the mid 80’s. It’s the case involving Pink Cheeks and her Peppermint Soap…
Photo: YouTube/Jeffrey Blystone