Investigators seize items from former judge's Creek County courtroom
Saturday, January 8th 2005, 3:19 pm
News On 6
SAPULPA, Okla. (AP) _ A forensic team seized carpet samples, a chair and robes Friday from the courtroom of a retired judge whose alleged conduct is being investigated by a multicounty grand jury.
Former District Judge Donald D. Thompson is accused of performing lewd acts and exposing himself during court proceedings. Thompson retired last year after the state attorney general's office petitioned for his bench removal.
He allegedly used a penis pump, which a court reporter said ``sounded like a blood pressure cuff being pumped up,'' said court reporter Lisa K. Foster. She also said she saw Thompson's genitals on occasion.
Thompson, 58, has called the allegations ``lies and treachery.''
An investigator in Pottawatomie County District Attorney Richard Smothermon's office and agents with the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation served the warrant. Smothermon was appointed to oversee the grand jury after Creek County District Attorney Max Cook recused himself the case.
``They are collecting evidence for analysis,'' Smothermon said.
OSBI spokeswoman Jessica Brown said she couldn't comment on any seized items until the information is released into the court system.
Attorney General Drew Edmondson's initial petition alleged that Thompson violated three canons from the code of judicial conduct in the Oklahoma constitution.
Some witnesses, including a police chief, a juror and a court reporter said they heard a ``swooshing'' sound or were listed in the petition filed in the Court of the Judiciary of the State of Oklahoma on June 23.
Thompson admitted that the penis pump was under his bench during a murder trial on Aug. 22, 2003, and at other times, but he denied using the pump, according to the document.
He testified the pump was a gag gift from a friend.
All evidence from the seizure was taken to the OSBI lab where it will be analyzed, Smothermon said.
The outcome of the analysis could affect the district attorney's decision in whether criminal charges will be filed, he said, and a decision could come soon.