Judge, Prosecutor Face Hearing Over Sex In Chambers
2:45 AM, Apr 25, 2007
A judge and a prosecutor face disciplinary hearings after admitting to having sex in the judge's chambers and being together in shower facilities at the Douglas County courthouse.Grafton M. Biddle, 57, resigned his position on Dec. 18 after rumors began circulating that he was having a romantic relationship with Laurie A. Steinman, 29, who was fired on Dec. 22 after she admitted having the affair.A complaint filed Friday with the Attorney Regulation Council says their affair began during the spring of last year. Both admit to having sex in the judge's chambers and "on a number of occasions Judge Biddle would 'sneak' into the women's shower facilities in the courthouse early in the morning to shower with Ms. Steinman. They kissed and fondled in the shower," the affidavit said.Biddle does not have a listed number, and a message left for Steinman was not immediately returned.Both are marrried.A disciplinary hearing has yet to be scheduled before the state Supreme Court Disciplinary Judge William Lucero. Both face punishment of up to disbarment.Biddle's wife told 7NEWS she first reported the affair to the chief judge in December 2006. She told 7NEWS she is "repulsed" by the affair but believes "God uses all things for good."She said she hopes to somehow use this sad chapter in her life to help other women who've suffered similar fates.The affair began in spring 2006 when Biddle complimented Steinman's work and offered her mentoring tips. That developed into coffee, conversation, and rendevous.Before he was appointed by Gov. Bill Owens, Biddle served in both the Attorney General and U. S. Attorney's offices, and was a deputy district attorney from 1981 to 1988.Biddle was a magistrate for the 18th District Court for approximately 15 years and elevated to the Douglas County Court bench in mid-2006. Steinman was hired as a deputy district attorney in February 2006."Ms. Steinman was required periodically to appear in front of Magistrate Biddle to plea pending cases and at times make plea/and or sentencing recommendations to him from the beginning of her employment ... until Magistrate Biddle transitioned to the position of County Court Judge in July/August 2006," the affidavit said.Local attorneys have expressed outrage over the alleged affair. Denver criminal defense lawyer Dan Recht told 7NEWS, "The shame is the vast majority of judges and attorneys are good, decent, ethical people who are working really hard to make the judicial system work fairly and efficiently.""It's disgusting to me. You have an obligation, in particular as a judge, to act ethically, to act reasonably, and to maintain the trust of the whole state that put you in that position, and he clearly violated that trust," Recht said.
Click here to read the complaint filed by the state of Colorado.