08:50, September 26 80 0 abajournal.com

2018-09-26 08:50:07
Judge is reassigned after being accused of calling prosecutor the B-word and implying they had sex

A Chicago-area judge says he doesn’t believe he called a prosecutor “a bitch,” nor does he believe he made a remark that implied they may have had sex.

Judge Mauricio Araujo told the Chicago Tribune he “did not call her bitch. I do not believe I did.” Nor does he believe he said the prosecutor, an fomer law school classmate, may have ignored him in his courtroom because he did or didn’t have sex with her, Araujo said.

An investigation by the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office cited an accusation that Araujo did make those remarks, according to documents obtained by the Tribune through a public records request. The name of the prosecutor who reportedly sparked Araujo’s ire was redacted.

Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx filed a complaint on Sept. 18 with the criminal court’s presiding judge after the investigation concluded. Araujo was reassigned to administrative duties last Thursday in a one-sentence order that did not state the reason why.

Foxx’s complaint included a Sept. 13 memo summarizing interviews with the prosecutor who apparently angered Araujo and other prosecutors who were in the courtroom on Sept. 11, the day of the alleged incident.

The female prosecutor who apparently upset Araujo told an investigator that Araujo made unwanted sexual advances when they were classmates 25 years ago, and she doesn’t believe she has spoken to him since then.

The prosecutor witnesses said Araujo appeared upset and had remarked that a female prosecutor didn’t acknowledge him during a brief court appearance that day.

One of the other prosecutors interviewed said she overheard Araujo telling his clerk in Spanish words to the effect that, “She walked in and didn’t even give me any congrats or acknowledge me. She acted like she didn’t know who I was.”

Another prosecutor said he was in chambers with Araujo when the judge referred to the female prosecutor, said you would think she would say hi after they attended law school together, and called her a bitch. Araujo graduated from Loyola University Chicago School of Law in 1993.

When the prosecutor in Araujo’s chambers suggested the judge’s former classmate may not have recognized the judge in his robes, Araujo allegedly said there were only about 50 people in his law school class. “Well, maybe it’s because I didn’t have sex with her or maybe it’s because I did have sex with her,” Araujo allegedly said.

Araujo told the Tribune he doubts that he made sexual advances to the prosecutor when they were in law school. He also said the prosecutor’s failure to acknowledge him did not upset him.

“I just thought it was weird,” he said. “I don’t know why she treats me like a stranger. I’ve been in this building five years and she always ignores me.”