LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The Latest on the indictment of a former Arkansas judge accused of trading lighter sentences for sexual favors and photos (all times local):
A former Arkansas judge accused of giving lighter sentences to some defendants in exchange for nude photos or sexual favors is being held in protective custody at a county jail.
Online jail records show that Joseph Boeckmann was processed and booked Monday evening into the Pulaski County Detention Center in Little Rock. He’s being held at the jail on a federal hold for U.S. marshals.
The local sheriff’s spokesman, Capt. Carl Minden, confirmed that Boeckmann was in protective custody because of his previous roles as a district court judge and assistant prosecutor. Minden also said the 70-year-old former judge is on suicide watch.
Boeckmann pleaded not guilty earlier Monday. He’s facing several charges, including bribery and fraud. He was ordered held in jail until a detention hearing Wednesday.
Federal prosecutors say a former Arkansas judge tried to bribe witnesses and had another person threaten one of them amid allegations that he gave lighter sentences to some defendants in exchange for sexual favors or nude photos.
U.S. Department of Justice attorney Jonathan Kravis levied the accusations during an arraignment hearing Monday for former Cross County District Court Judge Joseph Boeckmann. Kravis says the alleged witness tampering should be enough to keep Boeckmann detained as he awaits a November trial.
The 70-year-old Boeckmann pleaded not guilty to several charges during the hearing, including fraud and bribery.
Kravis says one witness told prosecutors that Boeckmann had another person offer him money to recant his testimony. The witness said he was told that he could be “disappear” if he didn’t recant.
A second unidentified witness told prosecutors that Boeckmann used a third party to offer him $500 to lie to investigators.
The magistrate judge agreed to hold Boeckmann until at least his detention hearing Wednesday.
A former Arkansas judge has been arrested on federal fraud charges stemming from allegations that he traded lighter sentences or threw out cases in exchange for sexual favors or nude photos from defendants.
Joseph Boeckmann was arraigned Monday in U.S. District Court in Little Rock. He was ordered held until a detention hearing on Wednesday.
The indictment against the former Cross County district court judge was unsealed earlier Monday. Boeckmann is facing several charges, including wire fraud and witness tampering.
Grand jurors determined that a former Arkansas judge accused of trading lighter sentences for sexual favors and photos corruptly used his position as a judge.
An indictment unsealed Monday says a grand jury determined that Joseph Boeckmann corruptly using his position “to obtain personal services, sexual contact, and the opportunity to view and to photograph in compromising positions persons who appeared before him in traffic and misdemeanor criminal cases in exchange for dismissing the cases.”
The indictment is dated Oct. 5. The former Cross County district court judge resigned in May after an investigation into allegations of inappropriate sexual relationships with men accused of crimes dating back to his time as a prosecutor decades earlier.
Boeckmann’s attorney, Jeff Rosenzweig, did not immediately return a message seeking comment Monday. Boeckmann has previously denied the allegations.
A former Arkansas judge accused of giving lighter sentences to defendants in exchange for nude photos and sexual acts has been indicted on federal fraud and bribery charges.
The indictment against former Cross County District Court Judge Joseph Boeckmann was unsealed Monday. He’s facing several charges, including wire fraud and witness tampering.
Boeckmann resigned in May after an investigation into allegations of inappropriate sexual relationships with men accused of crimes dating back decades, to his time as a prosecutor.
That investigation was conducted by the Arkansas Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission. The agency says Boeckmann had more than 4,600 photos of nude or semi-nude men in various positions.