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    Pa. high court defers email probe to ethics panel

     Justice Michael Eakin, who has apologized for the emails, has said their content is not a reflection of his 'character or beliefs.' (AP file photo)

    Justice Michael Eakin, who has apologized for the emails, has said their content is not a reflection of his 'character or beliefs.' (AP file photo)

    The Pennsylvania Supreme Court is deferring action on explicit emails involving one of its justices to the Judicial Conduct Board, which is currently investigating.

    The court issued a statement Monday that said it was taking that approach based on the recommendation of a law firm it hired to review the email scandal surrounding Justice Michael Eakin.

    The firm was hired a month ago, after Attorney General Kathleen Kane submitted 955 emails that her office flagged.

    Kane says Eakin received racially offensive messages and misogynistic pornography through a private email account under a pseudonym.

    The law firm says that among the hundreds of emails, Eakin sent 157, including “purported jokes and banter that are offensive.” Eakin’s lawyer, his wife Heidi Eakin, says they agree with the conclusion, but complain that her husband didn’t get a chance to give his side.

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