Rhode Island

Court Sets Deadlines for Embattled Rhode Island Judge to Save His Job

A Rhode Island judge accused of sexual harassment and judicial misconduct has been granted more time to respond to a recommendation that he be removed from the bench.

The Rhode Island Supreme Court on Thursday gave District Court Judge Rafael Ovalles 20 days from Aug. 9 to file an objection to the recommendation and another 30 days to prepare legal arguments.

A court commission found on Aug. 9 that Ovalles committed 41 conduct violations and should be removed from the bench. The Providence Journal reports the recommendation came after a hearing where witnesses testified Ovalles degraded women, mistreated court staff, lawyers and the public, and slept on the job.

Ovalles has denied the allegations.

The judge has been relieved from his duties with pay since December 2015.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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