The attorney for Talladega County Probate Judge Randy Jinks has asked that the deadline for a response to the Alabama Court of the Judiciary be extended to April 28.
Jinks was suspended in March following an investigation into allegations of various sorts of misconduct, including frequent remarks disparaging women and minorities and possible abuses of authority. His office was the subject of a lengthy investigation by the Alabama Judicial Inquiry Commission, which compiled a 78-page report. That report was sent to the Administrative Office of Courts, resulting in Jinks’ automatic suspension. Jinks had denied the allegations against him.
The bulk of the complaint consists of allegations that “Judge Jinks, by his numerous comments or actions (collectively referred to as ‘demeanor’) in the probate court office or in the execution of the duties of the probate judge, i.e. in his official capacity, has exhibited grossly inappropriate demeanor that has created a difficult, unprofessional and inappropriate atmosphere during the ordinary workday in that office and has injured the judiciary.”
It goes on to allege that his “inappropriate demeanor has been primarily directed at and/or witnessed by certain employees under his supervision.” All but one of these employees are women, and the only male employee is African-American. “In addition, visitors to the probate office have also been subjected or witness to Judge Jinks inappropriate demeanor.”
In a letter to the Court of the Judiciary dated April 7, attorney Amanda Hardy wrote that Jinks’ “prior counsel … recently withdrew … and (I) assumed the role of counsel today. The complaint filed in this matter is 78 pages in length and includes a large number which do not lend themselves to hasty analysis. It would serve the interests of justice in this matter to grant (for good cause shown) an extension of time to respond to the pending complaint.”
There is no response to the extension request posted on the Court of the Judiciary’s website.
Since there is no way of knowing exactly how long Jinks’ suspension will last, or what will happen afterward, Talladega County Presiding Circuit Judge Chad Woodruff has appointed Circuit Judge Will Hollingsworth special probate judge, and has made contact with the probate judges in surrounding counties to fill in when Hollingsworth is unavailable.