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Thread: Judge Accused of Fixing Tickets for Friends

  1. #1

    Judge Accused of Fixing Tickets for Friends

    RALEIGH, N.C. (AP)—
    A District Court judge in Winston-Salem is facing a judicial hearing on charges that she fixed traffic tickets for friends and members of her church.

    The Winston-Salem Journal reports that the N.C. Judicial Standards Commission has scheduled a hearing on Wednesday in Raleigh for Judge Denise Hartsfield. The hearing could last two to three days.


    Hartsfield has denied any wrongdoing. She's also accused of misleading agents with the State Bureau of Investigation.

    If she is found guilty of ethical violations, the commission will recommend discipline to the N.C. Supreme Court.

    The court could censure her, suspend her or remove her from office.

    http://www.myfox8.com/news/wghp-stor...,3421905.story

    The statement of charges against Judge Denise S. Hartsfield includes references to 22 cases in which she is accused of fixing traffic tickets for acquaintances, friends or people put on her docket by court employees who knew the defendants.

    According to the statement of charges by the N.C. Judicial Standards Commission, from June 2007 through May 2008, Hartsfield did not require some traffic defendants to appear in court or to pay fines.

    This is a summary of the cases in the commission's statement of charges in which defendants spoke with investigators:

    •Edward Levon Lowery Jr. was charged with driving 94 mph in a 65 mph zone. Lowery told State Bureau of Investigation agents that he did not hire an attorney to help him with the speeding charges, but gave the ticket to Hartsfield, "and she handled it for him." Lowery knew Hartsfield because he worked at CVS, where she picked up medicine for her mother.

    •Gloria Allen was charged with driving 73 mph in a 55 mph zone. She told the SBI she went to church with Hartsfield and asked Hartsfield for advice about her ticket. Hartsfield told Allen to give her the ticket, which Allen did.

    •Mark Jeffrey Kinney was charged with driving 78 mph in a 60 mph zone. Hartsfield said Kinney was a drug court employee who gave his ticket to Julia Frye, a trial court coordinator for the Forsyth District Court.

    •Laura Mauney Murphy was charged with driving 52 mph in a 35 mph zone. Murphy told investigators she believed a friend might have hired an attorney on her behalf to handle the ticket, but she does not know.

    •Cynthia Eileen Mack, the sister of the pastor at Union Baptist Church, was cited for parking in an emergency vehicle lane. Hartsfield told SBI agents that she knew Mack was connected with the pastor at the church and said she believed the ticket came from someone at the church, though she didn't remember who.

    •Joy Nicholson McCarter was charged with driving 56 mph in a 35 mph zone. McCarter's husband, Sheldon McCarter, was bishop of Greater Cleveland Avenue Christian Church. Sheldon McCarter told investigators that he gave the ticket to Hartsfield "and that was it."

    •Camilla Potts Kaveny was charged with driving 52 mph in a 35 mph zone. Kaveny told investigators she gave her citation to Jason Pollard, who at that time was a court clerk in Forsyth County. Kaveny told investigators that she got a letter from the Department of Motor Vehicles to turn in her license, and said she contacted Pollard, who told her the matter was resolved.

    •Erin Casey Hillman was cited for driving with a revoked license. Her case was dismissed. Hillman told investigators that she gave her citation to Pollard, who told her he could get the matter dropped but he needed the right judge.

    •Charlotte Rickard was charged with driving 49 mph in a 35 mph zone. Rickard told investigators that she gave her ticket to a man at her church "named Leon," who she believed worked in the court clerk's office. Rickard told investigators she did not go to court, did not hire an attorney, paid nothing for her ticket and had no points added to her license.

    •Carl Thomas Hicks was cited for having an expired registration. Hicks' case was dismissed.

    (Hicks, reached by phone Thursday by the Journal, said he remembered the citation but could not be sure of the year he received it. He said he did not ask Hartsfield — whose mother lives down the road from him — to fix his ticket.

    "If I'd gotten a citation, I'd just go to court, if I had to go to court about it," Hicks said. "I would take my medicine.")

    •Lonnie McGill Nesmith was charged with driving without an operator's license. His case was dismissed. Hartsfield told investigators that Nesmith attends church with her. She said he gave her his citation.

    In the other cases, the commission's statement does not indicate whether SBI agents spoke with the people Hartsfield is accused of helping. Those include Michael Lamont Austin, charged with driving 60 mph in a 45 mph zone; Jerry Anthony Duncan, charged with driving with a revoked license and driving 80 mph in a 55 mph zone; Edward Lee Johnson, charged with driving 75 mph in a 60 mph zone; William Jeffrie Groce, charged with driving 73 mph in a 60 mph zone; Justin Ray Bartlett, charged with driving 50 mph in a 35 mph zone; Johnny Mack Ligon Jr., charged with driving 43 mph in a 25 mph school zone; Arthur Crosby Church, cited with making an improper left turn; Chareka Brante Sade Scales, charged with driving 80 mph in a 65 mph zone; Wendy Carter Webb, charged with running a red light and having an expired inspection certificate; Kelvin Lemont Jackson, charged with driving 43 mph in a 25 mph school zone; and Patricia Elizabeth McHenry, charged with driving 84 mph in a 65 mph zone.
    Last edited by Rael; 09-07-2011 at 06:39 PM.



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  3. #2
    Judges should be required to fix fifty percent of all tickets

  4. #3
    traffic laws should only be enforceable if there is consequential harm involved. (other cars have to slam on breaks, swerve out of the way, etc.)

  5. #4
    The only wrongdoing here is that the judge didn't do this for everyone.
    "I shall bring justice to Westeros. Every man shall reap what he has sown, from the highest lord to the lowest gutter rat. They have made my kingdom bleed, and I do not forget that."
    -Stannis Baratheon

    Quote Originally Posted by otherone View Post
    The reason we have an evil, immoral empire is that it is populated by evil, immoral peons. The State isn't a faceless monster...it is composed of all our petty, ignorant, self-righteous and self-absorbed neighbors.

  6. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Philhelm View Post
    The only wrongdoing here is that the judge didn't do this for everyone.
    That is how I see it Phil !

  7. #6
    Did I mentioned the judge is black and it looks like all the people who had tickets fixed were also black? Now people are playing the race card saying they are only going after her because she is black.

  8. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Rael View Post
    Did I mentioned the judge is black and it looks like all the people who had tickets fixed were also black? Now people are playing the race card saying they are only going after her because she is black.
    Well , I for one , am an equal oppurtunity guy , I could care less what color anyone is , fix my ticket , I will buy you a beer !



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