The Judicial Conduct Board of Pennsylvania has filed disciplinary charges to keep a former Philadelphia Traffic Court judge accused of ticket-fixing from regaining his $90,000 salary and nearly two years of back pay.
Michael Sullivan was among the Traffic Court judges acquitted by a federal jury of criminal conspiracy charges this summer because the judges didn’t take bribes in return for fixing tickets.
Sullivan has been suspended without pay since the federal charges were filed in February 2013. But it appeared that suspension might be lifted and he’d soon be able to collect his salary and back pay. On Monday, the Judicial Conduct Board Monday brought a disciplinary case against Sullivan, charging that he did dismiss tickets to the politically connected, violating standards of judicial conduct and the state Constitution.
The board is seeking a new order to suspend Sullivan until the charges are heard by the state Court of Judicial Discipline.
Sullivan’s attorney, Samuel Stretton, said in phone interview Sullivan will contest the case.
“His position is that they’re incorrect, the allegations, and he intends to vigorously fight them,” Stretton said.
The Court of Judicial Discipline will hold a public trial and could strip Sullivan of his post, his salary and his future pension benefits. Although the state Legislature abolished Philadelphia Traffic Court, Sullivan is entitled to keep his elected judicial post until it ends at the end of 2017.
You can read the Judicial Conduct Board’s filing against Sullivan here.