SAN FRANCISCO – Former El Dorado County Superior Judge Steven C. Bailey, who is running for California Attorney General this year, has filed his response to the state Commission on Judicial Performance's notice of formal proceedings.
The response, filed on March 7, comes after the Commission on Judicial Performance notified him of allegations of willful misconduct in office, conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice that brings the judicial office into disrepute, and improper action within the meaning of article VI, section 18 of the state's constitution.
In his response to the commission, Bailey denied the allegations. He did admit that he worked with the Redd Group, one of the focuses of the allegations. The Redd Group is an organization that helps businesses and organizations collect data to use in their campaigns.
According to the allegations filed on Feb. 20, the commission said Bailey used the Redd Group to prepare a survey regarding public opinion concerning a candidate for the El Dorado County Superior Court in June 2016.
Bailey said the Redd group asked him for a statement regarding its service. The Redd Group reviewed the statement before it was posted on its website and Bailey approved the final draft, which was published in his name as an individual and did not identify him as a judge, according to the response.
Bailey said the statement published on the website included a photo of him in his judicial robe without his approval and was linked to a website maintained by Bailey.
“Judge Bailey admits in part and denies in part due to the lack of personal knowledge the factual allegations set forth in count one of the notice of formal proceedings and denies that he engaged in any conduct that constituted a violation of the code of judicial ethics...,” according to Bailey’s response.
The second count against Bailey stated that Bailey kept ordering criminal defendants to use CHI Monitoring, a provider of electronic monitoring services that employs Bailey’s son.
Bailey said his son works for CHI, but he denied that he conducted violation of the code of judicial ethics.
Bailey said he consulted with Judge Suzanne N. Kingsbury before ordering defendants to be electronically monitored through CHI devices and Kingsbury told him to get an ethics opinion from the California Judges Association.
The CJA said Bailey was not required to disclose the relationship unless his son was called to testify in a hearing, according to Bailey.
In count three, Bailey was accused of appointing attorney Bradley Clark for a case without input from counsel and without disclosing that Clark was a personal friend. Bailey denied that he committed a violation by appointing Clark.
Bailey was also accused of receiving numerous gifts that he wasn’t supposed to receive as a judge, but Bailey argued that the gifts he got were permitted gifts.
Bailey faced seven other allegations and denied all the charges he faced, including allegations of failing to report or inaccurately reporting travel related payments and reimbursements he got from Northwestern University School of Law and George Mason University School of Law.