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1 charge tossed against judge in secret recording case

August 3, 2019

FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) — A criminal charge against a former New Mexico magistrate judge accused of surreptitiously recording of private conversations has been dismissed.

The Farmington Daily Times reports a state district court judge recently tossed out a misdemeanor count of contempt of court against former Aztec Magistrate Court Judge Connie Johnston.

However, Johnston still faces 13 criminal charges filed by the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office. She has pleaded not guilty.

In 2017, the New Mexico Supreme Court removed Johnston from office for misconduct. A state commission said the misconduct included dishonesty, surreptitious recording of private conversations in the courthouse and abuse of her judicial power of contempt.

Prosecutors say Johnston recorded telephone calls involving former Aztec Magistrate Court manager Lori Proctor that were likely made in a private.

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Information from: The Daily Times, http://www.daily-times.com

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