The Iowa Supreme Court has “publicly reprimanded” a Sioux City judge. District court judge Patrick McCormick let the Woodbury County Sheriff put a campaign sign in his yard in November of 2000. That violated the ban on judges engaging in political activity. After a complaint and an investigation, McCormick claimed his wife was responsible for the sign. But after a month of sleepless nights, the judge confessed that he was the one who gave permission for the sign to be displayed in his yard. The Iowa Supreme Court Board of Professional Ethics and Conduct calls McCormick’s lie a serious infraction, as the justices say “a dishonest judge directly threatens public confidence in the judicial system.” The high court did consider suspending McCormick, but decided on a public reprimand instead.
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