Judge called staffer a ‘heifer’ and a judge an ‘Uncle Tom,’ according to order removing her from bench
A Birmingham, Alabama, domestic relations judge has been removed from the bench based on findings that she used Facebook aliases to communicate with litigants and “engaged in a pattern of abuse of staff, attorneys and litigants.”
The Alabama Court of the Judiciary removed Judge Nakita Blocton of Jefferson County, Alabama, in a Dec. 10 order. She had been temporarily removed in May.
AL.com and the Associated Press have coverage of the decision, issued after a December trial.
The commission said Blocton made employees work unreasonable hours, repeatedly threatened to fire employees, and verbally abused and belittled one employee. She also called one employee a “heifer.”
The commission also found that Blocton had a pattern and practice of inappropriate comments. Examples included calling one judge an “Uncle Tom” and another judge a “fat b- – – -.”
The commission also said Blocton:
• Used several Facebook aliases to communicate with litigants in a pending domestic relations case in an effort to affect the outcome.
• Demanded employees’ work computer login information and ordered employees to show her their private cellphones, so any information related to the ethics investigation could be deleted.
• Failed to promptly dispose of many cases assigned to her, even though she spent a substantial amount of time at the office.
The court said the Judicial Inquiry Commission failed to prove that Blocton used or appeared to use drugs in an inappropriate manner, failed to prove that she is mentally unstable, and failed to prove that she made an inappropriate contribution to a mayoral candidate. The ethics complaint had alleged that Blocton used prescription pills, including the diet drug phentermine, which produced behavioral changes.
The commission said Blocton failed to upheld the integrity of the judiciary; failed to conduct herself in a way that promotes confidence in the integrity of the judiciary; failed to maintain the decorum befitting her office; failed to be patient, dignified and courteous; failed to promptly dispose of court business; and failed to diligently discharge her responsibilities.
Blocton is represented by Emory Anthony. He told AL.com and the AP that he hasn’t discussed the next step with Blocton, but she could choose to appeal.
“We were trying to keep her on the bench, and we were disappointed they removed her from the bench,” Anthony said.
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