09:58, December 19 172 0 abajournal.com

2018-12-19 09:58:07
Judge reprimanded for groping 3 women; he texted colleague ‘nice body for a 70 year old’

Photo by Andrey_Popov/Shutterstock.com.

A Texas judge has received a public reprimand for groping three women, including a fellow judge, during a social function last year.

Judge Guy Williams of Corpus Christi, Texas, was reprimanded in a letter by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct on Dec. 7 and released publicly last Friday, report the Corpus Christi Caller-Times, Texas Lawyer and the Associated Press.

Williams was accused of groping the fellow judge during a group photo at the party. The complaining judge said Williams “literally grabbed and squeezed my butt,” then sent her a text message with the picture soon after it was taken.

“Nice body for a 70 year old,” the text read.

Williams had denied touching his colleague but acknowledged the text message. “We are close to the same age, so I figured it was a compliment,” he told the Texas judicial commission.

Williams also was accused of inappropriately touching two court clerks at the same party. He denied both claims but did admit telling one of the women after the party that he had heard she was “one of my victims.”

The Texas judicial commission concluded that Williams’ conduct toward the women violated ethics rules because it cast public discredit on the judiciary and was not “patient, dignified and courteous.”

Williams did not run for re-election in November. The reprimand prevents Williams from serving as a visiting judge after another judge takes his seat in January. Without the visiting judge option, Williams will be unlikely to collect full state retirement benefits, according to the Caller-Times.

Williams’ lawyer, Chris Gale, told the Caller-Times that Williams plans to repeal the reprimand, along with another reprimand also released last Friday.

The second reprimand accuses Williams of improperly transferring custody of children to their father in combined cases involving the man’s two ex-wives. The father had not filed any motions seeking custody, and Williams did not conduct a public hearing before making the decision. Williams vacated the order the next day, according to the reprimand.

Williams also has faced criminal charges in separate incidents.

He was partially acquitted in March on a charge of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon after he was accused of pointing a gun during a road rage incident. He was arrested in May on suspicion of public intoxication and resisting arrest after the vehicle he was riding in crashed. Then in November, he was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated and unlawful carrying of a weapon.

The November and May charges, all misdemeanors, are still pending, according to the Caller-Times.