California judge ordered removed from office for misconduct

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A state agency says it has ordered a California judge removed from office for multiple acts of misconduct including denial of due process to a defendant, improper conversations with attorneys and comments that constituted sex harassment.

The Commission on Judicial Performance said Wednesday the removal of Contra Costa County Superior Court Judge John T. Laettner becomes final in 30 days, subject to possible review by the state Supreme Court.

The commission says it adopted findings of an evidentiary hearing that Laettner was not truthful in his testimony.

The East Bay Times reported last month that Laettner had insisted to a commission panel that he had told the "absolute truth."

A telephone message seeking comment was left with the judge's attorneys.

Laettner was appointed to the bench in 2006.

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