ARKANSAS: Judge Accused Of Soliciting Sex From Young Men In Return For Lighter Sentences

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports:

A Cross County judge is accused of soliciting sex from offenders in his court in exchange for sentence reductions, the Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission said. District Court Judge Joseph Boeckmann will have 30 days to respond to charges filed by the commission, which were released Tuesday. He is also entitled to a hearing in front of the commission to determine whether he violated rules of judicial conduct. The commission could “admonish, reprimand or censure” the judge, David Sachar, executive director of the commission, said during a news conference Tuesday afternoon.

He added that the commission does not have the authority to suspend Boeckmann, adding that “it is not out of the realm of possibility” that the commission would go through the Arkansas Supreme Court to seek removal of the judge from the bench. Boeckmann, a district judge since 2009, used his role as judge to seek “out young Caucasian male litigants,” for the purpose of sexual relationships, the commission stated in its allegations. “My staff has gone through thousands of pages of documents, court records, checks, and that will be part of the case,” Sachar said, adding “there are still some determinations to be made.”

The judge is also being investigated over claims that he has child porn on his computer.

  • oikos

    “The commission could “admonish, reprimand or censure” the judge”

    How about remove from office, arrest, try and sentence the judge?

    • Gene

      I was thinking of something scathing and witty to say…but, I don’t think I, or anyone else, can top the simplicity and truth of your words here Oikos. you nailed it

      • tristram

        Each governmental entity has a scope of jurisdiction. I suspect that the commission has no power to impose criminal penalties but can refer the matter to the prosecutor or DA for criminal proceedings.

    • Necessitas

      If that’s all the commission can do, then they just proved their own existence to be entirely futile.

      • lymis

        That would depend. If some other entity uses the commission’s results as the basis of some sort of punishment, then it’s fine.

        Cops can’t convict someone or sentence them to prison, but it doesn’t mean their work is futile. It’s just the first step in a longer process.

      • Reality.Bites

        Apparently they can request he leave the bench, but can’t enforce it except by pursuing charges with the state Supreme Court. I’d guess though, that their recommendation carries a lot of weight and if they tell you to step down you’d better do it.

        • ChrisMorley

          He’s 69. I predict a resignation.

          • RaygunsGoZap

            I predict that will happen at ate something o’clock!

          • Reality.Bites

            Followed by retirement in Palm Springs.

      • John Masters

        The author didn’t explain it well. Another action the Commission can take is to refer the case to the State Supreme Court, which can remove the Judge. That’s another option available to them.

      • Mark Lewis

        Do not make a Star Trek joke… Do not make a Star Trek joke… Do not make a Star Trek joke… *taps fingers on desk*

    • Todd20036

      Hmm. A lighter sentence, or sex with him. Lighter sentence or sex with him.

      Tough call. Seriously.

      • Reality.Bites

        Imagine the humiliation now felt by the guys he didn’t even offer a lighter sentence.

    • teeveedub

      They can also wag their fingers at him and tell him he’s naughty. No TV or cell phone for a week. /smh

      • oikos

        Go to your room.

    • Doug105

      Bush appointee In Arkansas? Good luck with that.

      A compiled list of republican sex crimes or good ole hypocrisy

      (Note this came from two lists and I’ve never got around to narrowing it down, I have found no comparable list for the democrats, but haven’t looked in a while. Nor have I kept this one updated make of it what you will.) https://www.facebook.com/doug.doug.39545/posts/1718070241756607

    • jutta

      The newspaper report does not mention *how* young those men were. If they were above the age of consent there may or may not exist a provision in Arkansas’ criminal law that prohibits such conduct. It was certainly bad judgement, unethical and an abuse of power on his part and most probably against the rules of conduct for judges, but it may not be a criminal offense.

      • oikos

        It is a criminal offense to offer reduced sentences for sex.

      • ChrisMorley

        He’s also got paedophile porn on his computer; you do the math.

  • Gigi

    Imagine how differently this case would be handled if the judge were a poor, unemployed man.

    • Gene

      or woman…or black…or “openly”, (I prefer PROUDLY) gay (vs the vile self hating closet case this guy it would seem is)

      • Gigi

        I didn’t want to be accused of “playing the race card” but I didn’t think of thet scenario as well.

    • Reality.Bites

      I take your point, but considering it’s an issue of a powerful person exploiting the vulnerable in his control, it couldn’t involve a poor, unemployed man and be a similar case.

      I would say, however, this is one case I wouldn’t mind the Utah family court judge handling.

      • Gigi

        My larger point was that there are different rules for people in positions of power

        • RoFaWh

          I had an idiot for my immediate boss for some years. One time we were discussing the Big Boss and I expressed my distaste for his grandstanding and general silliness. My own boss replied “But, oh! he’s the head of the organization and can do anything he wants.”

          To which I responded “Yes he is but no he can’t. Given the salary he makes and the responsibilities of his job, he should be held to a much higher standard than his many underlings.”

          The interesting thing was the confused look on my own boss’s face. He just didn’t get it.

          [Dialogue paraphrased.]

    • lymis

      Yeah, that would be called “dating,” not “professional misconduct.”

  • perversatile

    Ya know that big hole on Oak Island….

  • vorpal

    Aaaand somehow the right wingers will claim that this is a reflection on all gay men, just like the WBC is accepted as totally legit accurate representation of all Christians.

    • Ninja0980

      I give it until lunch time.

    • Reality.Bites

      I’d bet you a Starbucks semen latte though that this judge is married with children and is a staunch Republican.

      • TuuxKabin

        first thing i did was a google search but only came up with stats re: districts, county and demographics. no info re: party affiliation or marital status . . . any suggestions for further info? Not quite awake yet, maybe I’ll do wikipedia too.

        • Reality.Bites

          No idea how to find out. I’m just going with my gut and the fact that it’s a rural county in a red state, making it unlikely any judge is anything but a married Republican. But of course I could be wrong, which is why I only offered to bet a latte.

        • John Masters

          In all likelihood, the judicial races are officially non-partisan, which might explain why his party affiliation isn’t listed. That doesn’t, however, mean he’s not a Republican, just that it’s not an official part of the Ballot.

          • Reality.Bites

            I was able to confirm that Arkansas judicial elections are indeed non-partisan.

      • and a xtain! of the fundie type! i’ve got a dollar that says so.

      • lymis

        If Teabagistan isn’t already erupting over the fact that he’s either openly gay, single or a Democrat, or that he’s a professed atheist or non-Christian, I think you can safely assume that yes, married, straight-identified Christian Republican until proven otherwise.

        • Reality.Bites

          I did find out that he’s an elected judge, which makes it unlikely he’s openly gay or a Democrat.

          One of the things he’s accused of is making defendants pick up cans and photographing their butts while bent over. There are lots of guys around here who do that (for the deposit), but I’ve never wanted to see their butt.

          • Dan

            Jesus told me that’s second base with the gays.

      • RaygunsGoZap

        You misspelled “stank”

    • James

      There is a big difference in that the WBC is just an extreme representation of what most Christians believe, i.e. that there is a supernatural, omnipotent being who cares what people do / eat / wear / think / believe / say and whether or not they pray to him. The lovable church-going granny and Shirley Phelps-Roper are of the same ilk: after all, fundamentalists are following the “fundamentals.” The only commonality between most gay men and this judge, on the other hand, is having sex with other men.

  • I think he took the notion of banging the hammer of justice a bit too literary.

    • Todd20036

      You mean that isn’t what “Bang, bang Maxwell’s silver hammer…” meant?

      • IDEK I’ll have to google that.

        • ChrisMorley

          Clue: a Beatles lyric.

    • Brian in Valdosta

      Bailiff, whack his peepee!!

  • Ninja0980

    The judge needs to be disbarred from office and put in jail.

  • Prion

    What little I know of how courts work comes from watching TV. So what I want to know is: when does a judge have a private moment with a defendant in any circumstance let alone for soliciting sex? Wouldn’t counsel always be present? Or are various counselors part of the sex-for-favors ring??

    • lymis

      That’s exactly what occurred to me, too.

      • caphillprof

        “The report says Boeckmann at times told offenders to perform “substituionary sentences” and asked them to “contact him to present their ‘trash pick up’ requirements at either his office or his home.”

        “When litigants arrived to complete the required trash pickup, Boeckmann would take pictures of their buttocks as they bent over to work, the commission alleges.”

    • Halloween_Jack

      In a world in which everything was done strictly according to the book, and all criminal defendants had effective legal counsel, that probably wouldn’t happen. But I’m guessing that the public defendants in what seems to be a poor and sparsely-populated county aren’t paid very well, and given the choice between their client going through a lengthy trial that they’re probably going to lose and having a private, closed-door “session” with the judge that results in a dismissal or probation, they’d advise their clients to do what the nice judge tells them to. (Keep in mind that, not that far away in West Memphis, three teenagers got convicted of murder basically because they were goths.)

  • well, if the state Supreme Court is involved, you know it’s bad. he might actually go to jail, folks. and that would be good.

    white judges don’t go to jail often. keep an eye on this case. white judges often deserve to go to jail. this is a rare thing.

    • Blake Jordan

      Probably only because his victims were men, if they were women he would find a lesser punishment out of it…

    • Circ09

      Nobody has even filed criminal charges yet. From reading all the proceedings so far are civil.

  • Nigel

    Sounds like a rapist.

    • zhera

      He’s a predator that gets off on having power over other people. Getting someone to suck your cock is not a problem for this guy, he could’ve just gone to a prostitute.
      The child pornography is very unnerving, I think. This guy is sure to have TONS of skeletons in his closet.

      • Reality.Bites

        In a county with 20,000 people he’d have to leave town. (Not excusing him)

  • joey

    hard to believe anything like this could happen i n Arkansas

    • KentDean

      I, for one, was shocked.

  • Michael Rush

    It’s kind of a universal truth when you give a person too much power they abuse it one way or another .

  • JaniceInToronto

    But, but he looks like such a -nice- man! He has the robes of honour and everything…

    /s

  • Gene Perry

    Judicial activism?

  • zhera

    I’d take my chances on a harder sentence. Seriously.

  • LovesIrony

    Is that a gavel in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?

  • geru

    Yeesh. I can pretty much guess what’s going on in his mind in that picture. Unfortunately.

  • ChargesPending

    I’d let him have at my ass. I hope he rides bareback. I’d love some judicial juice.

    • ChrisMorley

      He’s 69. You need to be white or he’s just not interested.

      • ChargesPending

        69 is a great number! Yes, I’m white and give it up only to white men. Hope he has a big, thick gavel!

  • Kevin Perez

    I wonder if he’s married to a woman .. not that it matters. The guy is a creep.

  • canoebum

    What about those young caucasian men who said no? Obviously they need a new sentencing hearing, because after being rejected, there’s no way the judge could have been impartial. I can easily see him vindictively imposing a more harsh sentence than deserved, just because he was angry.

    • ChrisMorley

      What about all the men of colour who he excluded from his judicial favours? Was there racial bias in his sentencing of them? I bet that never happens in Arkansas /s

  • saucetin

    Republican.

  • Puckfair52

    “The ‘work’ usually consisted of picking up cans either alongside city roads in Wynne, or actually picking up cans at Boeckmannn’s residence, wherein Boeckmann would photograph the buttocks of the men as they were bending to retrieve the garbage. Multiple male litigants have been photographed by Boeckmann during these ‘community serivce’ type sentences. Boeckmann maintained these photographs of male litigants’ buttocks in his home for his own personal use. In addition to the illegal sentences, Boeckmann has used his judicial status to form relationships, personal and sexual, with male litigants. Beockmann has engaged in a consistent pattern of seeking out young Caucasain male litigants before Cross County District Court for the purpose of forming personal sexual relations with the litigants, thus creating a self-imposed conflict of interest for himself in his role as Cross County District Court judge.”
    time in the Can!

  • Josh447

    Judge you’ve been a very very naughty boy

  • Ray Page

    Judicial coruption is rampant. This creep is the tip of the iceberg.

    A judge once told me… ” There is no justice system in America. There is a legal system, but it’s goal is seldom justice.”

  • 5moreminutes*imtired

    Hmmmm. Once with the judge or repeatedly in a jail cell. I know what I’d do! Jail cell, of course!

  • Chistery

    I am putting my money on him claiming that this was his own personal “scared straight” program. Ironic, isn’t it. Of course the purpose of the photos was to demonstrate that he still held some power over them even when they were not around, just like the more powerful inmates would if the young caucasian offender ever made it to prison. His selection of only young caucasian males could even be figured into his defense, claiming that they are at greater risk of violence and exploitation in a diverse prison population. It is Arkansas. He is an old white man in Arkansas. Unless they find explicit child porn on his computer I expect that he will be able to lawyer his way out of this.

  • Rocco Gibraltar

    Sounds like a case of quid pro blow to me.

    • Octavio

      (groan) 🙂

    • coram nobis

      No, it’s a “qui tom” action.
      – – –
      “Do you have my body? Don’t you think I’m guilty? I think you
      should let me go!” — habeas corpus, in lay terms

  • TheSpinMonkey

    ewwww I would rather do the time than that judge

  • Dreaming Vertebrate

    Despicable. Utter corruption of the judicial system.
    Try him, and ship him off to prison.

  • Dreaming Vertebrate

    Do the crime, do the time judge.

  • Dan Robinson
    • coram nobis

      I wondered if this would pop up.

      All rise!

  • Fayetteville Citizen

    I’m not defending this guy at all. I’m defending the process. If this is true he’s a sick man, and should be prosecuted. However, at this point in time these are only accusations. No evidence was described, or presented in this news article. No one said this guy was convicted of soliciting sex. The article says “Accused of Soliciting Sex”. What ever happened to “innocent until proven guilty”?

  • EdA

    It seems that this is not the first time that this guy has had issues.

    http://www.arktimes.com/ArkansasBlog/archives/2011/03/21/judge-cautioned-by-disciplinary-board

    I wonder if he’s a church goer and, if so, to what church.

  • Kissmagrits

    First came the extortion payoffs of retired Illinois Congressman Dennis Hasbeen, former GOP speaker. Now a district court judge accused of soliciting “young Caucasian males” from his position on the bench. But, this being Arkansas, birthplace of the profligate Bill Clinton – I’m not very surprised.

  • TallBearNC

    I really hope this guy is a Republican and really hope he is a teabag Republican… I hate to say it but when you are on the far right and you are so repressed… People do very bazaar and sick shit… I love how I was gay people are accused of doing things we don’t do… But then the far right …some of them crack under the pressure to be so righteous that they go out and you said shit like this… But in the end oh God forgives them… But if youre a libtard or gay… God doesn’t forgive you. Look at all the Catholic priest that molested boys and girls, and rarely do they get prosecuted… The church just move them around or out of the country to another country that doesn’t extradite and people were told they were doing penance for their sins which means eventually God would forgive them… And I don’t think any God would forgive anybody for molesting a child

    I’m not really sure if heaven or hell truly exists but if they do I hope people like this guy burn for all time. IF IF he is guilty… Because people are innocent until proven guilty he and his charges could be baseless based on somebody or some people that hate the judge for whatever reason

  • Guest

    History repeats itself – Judge Gary Little, Seattle

  • MikeBx2

    Let me tell you what I know about Cross County AR, and I know a lot. It’s the kind of place where if a gay man dared to live open and proud in a consenting adult relationship, the majority of it’s citizens would treat that person like a perverse criminal. Meanwhile, the sort of behavior by this judge would go unnoticed for years. Typical rural, red state Amurica!

  • coram nobis

    Eoni judicis est ampliare jurisdictionem. — A good judge extends his jurisdiction.

    — legal maxim

  • SilasMarner

    PIG

  • StraightGrandmother

    See what the closet does to you?

  • Jim

    30 days to respond?!? WTF! Isn’t using your office to solicit–actually to extort–sex a crime in Arkansas? Why hasn’t this guy been arrested and charged?