Judicial Board Will Review McCaffery Emails

After report Supreme Court justice sent racy emails from his personal account.

Pennsylvania’s Judicial Conduct Board will review whether State Supreme Court Justice Seamus McCaffery violated ethics in the state’s expanding “racy email” scandal, the Inquirer reports.

The scandal has largely been focused on the attorney general’s office under then-Attorney General Tom Corbett. But citizen activist Gene Stilp filed a complaint with the board after The Morning Call reported that McCaffery sent some of the emails from his personal account. While that suggests McCaffery hasn’t run afoul of rules against such activities using state computers and resources,  Stilp said that cases could be compromised by personal emails between the AG’s office and the judiciary.

“When you are a Supreme Court justice, you have a higher duty,” Stilp said Thursday. “Anything that reflects negatively on you as a person reflects on the court in a negative way – and that undermines people’s confidence in the court.

“Without confidence in the court,” Stilp added, “we don’t have a stable judiciary.”

McCaffery’s attorney, however, noted that proceedings of the Judicial Conduct Board are supposed to be private.

Dion Rassias, McCaffery’s attorney, would not say Thursday whether the justice had been notified of the inquiry.

“We all know that anything involving the Judicial Conduct Board is confidential,” he said. “I can only assume it’s from one of the serial complaint filers.”

The Inquirer cited “a letter from the board” agreeing to  “conduct an inquiry into the matters” raised by Stilp as its evidence of the review.