Seamus McCaffery Retires From Pennsylvania Supreme Court
Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Seamus McCaffery has retired from the Court, reports the Legal Intelligencer. This follows an earlier report by the Daily News‘ Chris Brennan anticipating the move. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court immediately called off a Judicial Conduct Board investigation of McCaffery’s activities, calling it “moot.”
The JCB issued a statement (see below) saying it was dismissing its investigations into McCaffery — including efforts that had been ongoing for “several months.”
The resignation is the culmination of a scandal weeks in the making: McCaffery had admitted to exchanging explicit emails that were at the center of the “Porngate” scandal that originated in the office of then-Attorney General Tom Corbett. (Corbett has denied knowledge of the emails, and forced the resignations of several state employees who participated in the exchange.)
The scandal took several twists after McCaffery’s admission. A fellow justice J. Michael Eakin, said McCaffery threatened to expose Eakin’s receipt of explicit emails unless Eakin prevailed upon Chief Justice Ronald Castille to halt efforts to investigate and oust McCaffery over the matter. McCaffery denied threatening Eakin.
It was after that allegation that McCaffery was suspended from his duties on the court, and Castille — in an opinion concurring with the suspension — labeled McCaffery a “sociopath” who had brought the court into “disrepute.” The Supreme Court, in its order suspending McCaffery, gave the Judicial Conduct Board 30 days to investigate an array of allegations against McCaffery.
More to come today in this developing story.