Vacancy open in 18th Judicial District Court after judge’s resignation

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AURORA | The 18th Judicial District Court is working to fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Judge John Scipione, who stepped down after having an affair with a clerk.

The Eighteenth Judicial District Nominating Commission will meet at the Arapahoe County Justice Center on Feb. 17 to interview and select nominees for appointment by the governor to the position, according to a Tuesday news release from the Colorado Judicial Department. 

Applications for the position are available on the Colorado Judicial Branch’s website and must be submitted by 4 p.m. on Feb. 7. To qualify, applicants must have practiced law in Colorado for at least five years and be a qualified elector of the 18th district at the time they are named judge.

Scipione was first appointed to the bench in 2018 by then-Gov.John Hickenlooper to fill a vacancy created by the retirement of a previous judge. He was formerly a judge in Arapahoe County Court.

Last year, Scipione ruled that Aurora’s charter banning felons from running for city council was unconstitutional under state law, a challenge that had been put forward by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of then-Aurora City Council candidate Candice Bailey.

According to reporting in the Denver Post, Scipione failed to disclose an extramarital affair he was was having with a clerk and was also facing a sexual harassment complaint.

Scipione was being investigated for violating the Colorado Code of Judicial Conduct and stepped down as part of an agreement with the Colorado Commission of Judicial Discipline, the Post reported.

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Bennett Rutledge
14 days ago

I’m sorry to see him go. Workplace harassment must not be condoned. However I do like his position that, once a person has completed the penalty prescribed by law for the crimes they were convicted of, there should not be any perpetual penalties piled on. I think any penalties not prescribed, in the specific law violated, should be considered “unusual” under the Eighth Amendment.