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Sunday, June 13, 2010

 

Deputy catches judge and public defender having...

Fayette County News

6:24 p.m. Friday, June 11, 2010 

DA: Deputy caught judge, public defender having sex

Alexis Stevens
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

 

An investigation has revealed a former Fayette County judge had a sexual relationship with a public defender who had 225 cases decided in his courtroom.

 

W.A. Bridges Jr., AJC Superior Court Chief Judge Paschal English's relationship with attorney Kim Cornwell is the subject of the investigation.

Chief Superior Court Judge Paschal English and Kim Cornwell, an assistant public defender, were caught having sex in a parked car in October 2008, according to documents released Friday by District Attorney Scott Ballard.

A Fayette sheriff's deputy recognized English, and later learned that Cornwell was a public defender, Ballard said. The deputy's dashboard camcorder recorded part of the incident, but that video is no longer available, according to Sheriff Wayne Hannah. No charges were filed after the incident.

"Beyond that, we don't know when the intimate relationship began," Ballard said Friday.

After the two were discovered in the Water Lake subdivision, Cornwell represented defendants in 225 cases in Judge English's courtroom, Ballard said.

Despite the relationship, the investigation did not find evidence of any wrongdoing in the courtroom, according to Jeff Turner, chief investigator.

"I do not find any evidence that any instances where the state or defendant were harmed by actions of the court ever took place in Judge English's courtroom at all, much less when Kim Cornwell was the attorney for the defendant," Turner wrote about his investigation.

Turner also said both English, 66, and Cornwell, 49, declined to comment for the investigation.

In an unrelated incident, English resigned on April 23 after it became clear he had ignored a complaint from an attorney that she was being sexually harassed by another judge in the Griffin Judicial Circuit.

Months earlier, attorney Susan Brown told English that she was being repeatedly harassed with crude comments by Superior Court Judge Johnnie Caldwell. Caldwell resigned April 19. Caldwell and English represented half of the county's Griffin Judicial Circuit’s Superior Court team.

Cornwell was placed on administrative leave when allegations of the romance surfaced. After her resignation, Public Defender Joseph Saia and Ballard were asked to investigate the alleged affair. On June 1, Cornwell was placed on leave without pay, Saia said.

English was a judge for 23 years. He appeared on the reality TV show “Survivor” in 2002.

 

 

LINK TO PHOTO OF JUDGE: 

 

http://www.ajc.com/news/fayette/da-deputy-caught-judge-547307.html?imw=Y


Comments:
I always did wonder what was behind those long robes. In this case it wasn't the defendants that the judge was being hard-on. "Will everyone please rise" takes on a whole new meaning.   

Judge: You've sworn to tell the truth and nothing but the truth today. Do you understand?
Defendant: Yes, your honor, I do.
Judge: So were you or were you not intoxicated when you were arrested?
Defendant: Judge, I swear I'm as sober as you are.
Judge: Bailiff, take this man away and lock him up for 30 days!
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