Creek County Judge denies allegations in court filings

Wednesday, July 14th 2004, 5:39 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- A judge accused of inappropriate sexual behavior has denied the allegations against him and asked that a petition seeking his removal be dismissed.

Creek County District Judge Donald D. Thompson on Tuesday filed documents with the Court on the Judiciary, asking that the allegations against him be limited to the initial complaint submitted to the Council on Judicial Complaints.

That complaint alleged that on Aug. 22, 2003, Thompson used a penis pump during a jury trial.

"From that finite allegation of misconduct, the investigation and the petition filed...have ballooned into an indeterminate series of sensational allegations," Thompson's attorneys, Clark Brewster and Robert Nigh Jr., wrote in a petition filed with the court.

Based on state law, the allegations in the petition to remove the judge from the bench should be limited to those in the original complaint, according to the filing.

Since the complaint was filed, the Administrative Office of Courts has confirmed that the judge has been accused of having sexually explicit pictures on his state-owned computer.

The information has not been made part petition before the Court on the Judiciary.

Thompson's attorneys say the petition filed with the Council on Judicial Complaints provided sufficient notice and limited set of allegations that could be defended. The petition filed with the Court of Judiciary does not.

The attorney general filed a petition with the Court on the Judiciary on June 23 seeking Thompson's ouster for alleged sexual misconduct while presiding over trials. The judge has denied the allegations previously through his attorney.

In his formal response, Thompson denies using a penis pump during non-jury and jury trials in his courtroom and in the presence of court employees. He also denied making attempts to show his genitals to his court reporter.

Edmondson's ouster petition alleged that Thompson fired his court reporter, Lisa Foster, after learning that she had cooperated with officials in the misconduct investigation.

The judge said Foster was not terminated, but an inquiry was made as to whether she could work in light of the allegations.

Edmondson's petition alleges that the judge also fired his secretary, Zelma Hindman, at the same time as Foster. Hindman also reportedly saw the penis pump.

Thompson's brief said the decision to terminate Hindman was finalized before any allegations were made. Thompson said other employees, including Foster, helped him reach the decision to fire Hindman.

A Sept. 13 trial date has been set.