Cross County judge resigns amid ethics violations allegations - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Cross County judge resigns amid ethics violations allegations

(SOURCE: WMC Action News 5) (SOURCE: WMC Action News 5)
(SOURCE: WMC Action News 5) (SOURCE: WMC Action News 5)

A judge is off the bench after turning in his resignation following charges of misconduct.

The resignation was announced on Monday by the Arkansas Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission.

Cross County District Court Judge Joseph Boeckmann resigned following charges that he reduced sentences of multiple men in exchange for sexual favors.

Boeckmann has been under investigation for several months for a wide range of allegations, including charges that he showed favorable treatment to men in return for sexual favors. 

In the resignation letter, Judge Boeckmann promised to "never seek employment as a local, county, or state employee or public servant in the State of Arkansas."

Boeckmann is accused of using his influence over male litigants for his "personal and sexual desires."

The resignation letter came just as the Judicial Commission was moving toward a public hearing on violations of ethics rules. It also came just as Boeckmann's lawyer was given notice of a very lengthy list of potential witnesses, in addition to some of the specifics of allegations those witnesses would be making against Judge Boeckmann. 

"We also are including a disc with photographs as part of our discovery obligation to you," prosecutor David Sachar writes in one letter. "It contains approximately 1,050 photographs taken from the judge's computer that we have received thus far. I anticipate receiving in excess of 3,400 more photographs very soon, also taken from the judge's home computer. Similar to the others you have received, they all depic young men, many naked who are in various poses inside the judge's home and outside in his yard."

Also, in a letter dated May 3 from Jeff Rosenzweig with the Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission to the judge's attorney, the subject of resignation was already being discussed.

"Deputy Director White will also use this opportunity to consider if there are any changes to the charges after eight months of interviewing witnesses and reviewing thousands of pages of documents since the nature of the investigation changes in July, 2015," Rosenzweig writes. "There may also be additional charges for violations supported by this new information. I know you plan to meet with your client this week. Should he wish to resign before the amended complaint (and other motions are filed) he would need to comply with the language we demand in his resignation letter by noon on Thursday, May 5, 2016." 

At this time, Boeckmann has not been charged with any criminal charges.

Boeckmann has been on the bench since 2009. He was temporarily suspended with pay on November 19, 2015, following the release of the ethics violations.

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