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Secretary of State candidate faced inquiry on acts as judge

July 18, 2021 GMT

ATLANTA (AP) — A former probate judge who is running for Georgia secretary of state has resolved an ethics complaint by agreeing not to run for a judgeship for the next seven years.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports Republican Torri “T.J.” Hudson, who had been chief magistrate court judge and probate court judge in Treutlen County, signed a consent agreement with the state Judicial Qualifications Commission that was filed with the Georgia Supreme Court.

“I am focused on launching my bid to serve Georgians as Secretary of State, and have no comment on a matter well-handled by the JQC,” Hudson, a Soperton resident, said in a statement.

The court filing shows Hudson was being investigated on allegations that he required a person to appear in court for a contempt hearing and then wrongly sentenced that person to jail time. The name of the person and the date when the jailing allegedly occurred were not listed in the agency’s filing. The commission investigates allegations of judicial misconduct.

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The commission filing said Hudson may have violated 10 judicial conduct rules.

Hudson resigned from the bench on April 19 to run for Secretary of State as a Republican. Also running as Republicans are incumbent Brad Raffensperger, four-term U.S. Rep. Jody Hice of Greensboro and former Alpharetta Mayor David Belle Isle. More candidates could still qualify.

Democrats who have announced include state Rep. Bee Nguyen of Atlanta, former Fulton County Commission chair John Eaves, who now lives in Gwinnett County, Albany Democratic activist Manswell Peterson and former Milledgeville mayor and state Sen. Floyd L. Griffin Jr.

Brenda Lynn Nelson-Porter of Newnan has filed to run as an independent.

Hudson swore in Brian Kemp as governor in 2019.