Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Circuit Judge Hulsey Resigns; Accused of Making Racist, Sexist Remarks

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Circuit Judge Hulsey Resigns; Accused of Making Racist, Sexist Remarks

Article excerpt

Byline: Larry Hannan

Jacksonville Circuit Judge Mark Hulsey III, embroiled in an investigation into allegations of making racist and sexist remarks, resigned Monday.

Chief Judge Mark Mahon confirmed that Hulsey, who could not be reached for comment, had emailed his resignation to Florida Gov. Rick Scott. Hulsey was facing potential impeachment by the Florida Legislature and Judicial Qualifications Commission.

Hulsey, who narrowly won re-election in August, is accused of saying black people should "go back to Africa" and female staff attorneys are "like cheerleaders who talk during the national anthem."

The Judicial Qualifications Commission also cited Hulsey in the misuse of his judicial assistant and staff attorneys responsible for helping all the judges in the Jacksonville-based 4th Judicial Circuit. The complaints say he used staff attorneys to prepare scripts for routine judicial tasks and required one to regularly do his work for him.

The commission panel said Hulsey's "indifference to your judicial duties" created problems for other staff and that he "exploited" his judicial assistant by having her pay personal bills, write letters and phone people on his behalf.

Hulsey denied doing anything inappropriate and said he never made any racist or sexist statements. He did acknowlege having his judicial assistant handle personal tasks for him and admitted that he listed people as supporting his 2016 re-election campaign whom he didn't get permission in writing as required under Florida law.

But Hulsey resigned a day before the The House Public Integrity & Ethics Committee was scheduled to open an investigation into his behavior that could have led to his impeachment. A judge hasn't been impeached in Florida since the 1970s.

Hulsey said his assistant never complained about the tasks, and said the endorsement list was an oversight. …

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