Judge admits letting secretary handle his work

CANTON, Ohio (AP) - A Municipal Court judge admitted allowing his secretary to sign his paperwork and make jail-release decisions while he was on vacation.
Judge Richard Kubilus acknowledged Tuesday that he was wrong to let Deborah Reichel handle his bench duties.
He agreed with a state complaint that he violated professional standards for Ohio judges between 2000 and 2002. The Ohio Supreme Court's disciplinary counsel has recommended that he be reprimanded.
Kubilus told the court's Board of Commissioners on Grievances and Discipline that he and Reichel had developed a rapport during his decade on the bench.
Reichel was allowed to draft court entries, put the judge's initials on work and submit it to other judges assigned to daily arraignment sessions.
Most of the eight cases cited in the complaint involved people on probation or given suspended jail time who later were re-arrested. In one instance, Reichel rejected a defendant's request for early jail release.
(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)