Alabama’s Wife-Beating Federal Judge Finally Resigns

by quaoar –

This photo provided Monday, Aug. 11, 2014 by the Fulton County Sheriffís Office, shows U.S. District Court Judge Mark Fuller after his arrest on a misdemeanor battery charge in Atlanta. Fuller, known for sentencing a former Alabama governor to prison in a corruption case, was released from an Atlanta jail Monday after he was accused of hitting his wife when she accused him of infidelity. Atlanta police arrested Fuller early Sunday at the Ritz-Carlton hotel in downtown Atlanta after responding to a complaint from his wife, Kelli Fuller. (AP Photo/Fulton County Sheriffís Office)

U.S. District Court Judge Mark Fuller

It took long enough.

U.S. District Judge Mark Fuller of Alabama, who last summer was arrested on charges he beat his wife in a hotel room in Atlanta, announced today that he will resign his lifetime appointment.

Fuller — the judge who presided over the case of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman — wrote a letter to President Obama and the 11th Circuit saying he will step down on Aug. 1.

Rep. Terri Sewell, D-Birmingham, said she welcomed the announcement from Fuller and is relieved that Congress can avoid going through an impeachment process.”Justice was not served. We sent the wrong message to victims of domestic violence by allowing a federal judge to collect a paycheck — without managing a caseload — and ultimately having his record expunged,” Sewell said. “Judge Fuller failed to uphold the values we hold dear.”

Alabama’s GOP congresswoman was also happy to see him go.

Rep. Martha Roby, R-Montgomery, said Fuller made the right decision to resign.”I hope this situation has brought more attention to the issue of domestic violence, both locally and nationally. Domestic violence is an all too common problem in our society. Violent acts against loved ones cannot not be tolerated, and we have to ensure victims are empowered to seek help,” Roby said.

The details of the case are spelled out in the police report.

Kelli Fuller, the former court assistant who was divorced from Fuller after the incident, has not spoken in public about what happened at the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Atlanta last August. But her version is amply represented in police files.”He’s beating on me! Please help me,” Kelli Fuller pleaded to a police dispatcher, who called for an ambulance and could be heard telling a co-worker, “I can hear him hitting her now.”

The policeman who entered the hotel room found her with “visible lacerations to her mouth and forehead” and said the room smelled of alcohol.

“Mrs. Fuller stated when she confronted him about their issues, he pulled her hair and threw her to the ground and kicked her,” the police report said. “Mrs. Fuller also stated she was dragged around the room and Mr. Fuller hit her in the mouth several times with his hands.”

So the judge gets dragged off to jail by police. He incredibly claims that he was just defending himself but agrees to enter a pre-trial diversion program that required him to undergo counseling in exchange for dismissing the charges later. Fuller said he was innocent but agreed to pre-trial diversion to make the whole thing go away.Fuller refused to resign — even after all but one of Alabama’s members of Congress and the governor called on him to do so. When even Jeff Sessions thinks it’s time for you to go — well, that’s saying something.

But Fuller refused. Probably figured he could ride it out and that Congress wouldn’t go so far as to impeach him.

But the 11th Circuit stripped him of his caseload and opened an investigation of him. That investigation is still pending though likely will be shelved now.

One can only guess that the 11th Circuit — which could not remove him from office — was going to nonetheless blister him, making impeachment more likely and thus prompting him to leave now.

Whatever the reason he decided to leave now — it’s good riddance to him.

President Obama will get to appoint a new judge for the Middle District of Alabama, although I’m sure the GOP in the Senate will put that appointment on the shelf.

 

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos

 

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Posted By: Keith

Writer, political junkie, rabid rock music fan, amateur gardener, astronomer and ornithologist, cook extraordinaire, sipper of fine wine and, more than once, the funniest guy in the room.

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