PUEBLO MUNICIPAL JUDGE WILLIAM MARTINEZ RESIGNS AFTER ALLEGATIONS OF ABUSE

Pueblo Municipal Court Judge William Martinez Resigned in Late January 2016 After Allegations That He Pushed and Verbally Assaulted an Employee

By Jenny Paulson / Southern Colorado Independent

Pueblo Municipal Court Judge William Martinez Resigned in Late January 2016 After Allegations That He Pushed and Verbally Assaulted an Employee
Pueblo Municipal Court Judge William Martinez Resigned in Late January 2016 After Allegations That He Pushed and Verbally Assaulted an Employee

Pueblo City Manager Sam Azad announced February 1st that Municipal Court Judge William Martinez resigned from his position January 29th and members of Council were told at the work session that they were to not talk about the personnel matter.

Martinez had been on leave since mid December after he reportedly pushed and verbally assaulted a female employee. The City refused to give Southern Colorado Independent Magazine the official police report of the incident and the public relations department of the Police Department refused to respond to questions. Police investigated the case then turned it over to the District Attorney and there has since been no official update or details released about the case.

A reporter from a tv station said that they interviewed the victim who was told shortly after by her attorney to ask the station to not air her version of the story. The tv reporter said the City told her that there was no video of the incident with the judge and employee however at the location described there are ceiling cameras and upon inspection by Southern Colorado Independent it appears that there are no blind spots.

The City of Pueblo pays out an average of 1 million per year to misconduct and typically gag orders those involved, requiring them to pay back the City if they talk about incidents. The City will not answer the question if the woman was paid off for the misconduct and gag ordered as is typical in their misconduct case settlements.

Martinez was hired by City Council in 2013 and replaced William Alexander, who was promoted to be a District Court Judge. Martinez had been a long time Public Defender prior to becoming Pueblo Municipal Court Judge. He is married to Joyce Vigil, a local divorce attorney.

 

Southern Colorado Independent interviewed several families at the Court House in late December who expressed relief that Martinez was no longer handling their cases. They said that Judge Kathleen Hern was being more reasonable. One mother of a teenager said that Martinez had acted unruly and unethically in their case and that they felt abused by the system under Alexander but “better” with Judge Hern. Hern was hired by a Council resolution to take Martinez’s place temporarily in mid December. 

Southern Colorado Independent reviewed a case in which Judge Martinez and Assistant City Attorney Lisa Macchietto last Spring together violated State of Colorado Municipal Court laws at least 20 times and refused to drop a case despite that false reports were admitted to by witnesses in Court. Judge Martinez and Macchietto reportedly allowed unethical “evidence” and let “witnesses” make statements that weren’t agreed upon legally before trial to twist the case. In an investigation afterwards, children involved who lied for their parents to retaliate admitted that they gave misinformation in the Court room, which Judge Martinez knew was false. A lawyer was going to file to overturn the case with complaints to the Bar Association should the Judge return to the bench.
Many say the Judge was seen unshaven and acting like he was possibly having a mental break down of sorts amidst controversy over this case and more so after he was accused of pushing and verbally assaulting an employee. It is not known if he has been officially charged for harassment and more or if he will be allowed to practice law again.
 Judge Martinez isn’t the only City official under fire recently.
Police Chief Luis Velez recently was subject of a Police Union survey in which 95% of police officers who responded said they are dissatisfied with his management of the department. The Union said the City is understaffed by at least 70 police officers to meet state averages and complained that the Chief shut down substations despite voter mandates, cut back narcs to one and the gang intervention unit completely. Police officers say that Velez’s management style completely disregards them and their safety and that most want him to resign.
City Clerk Gina Dutcher is facing a lawsuit by a man who had two shoulders dislocated and broken ribs after she reportedly false reported that the man harassed her at a Council meeting although no video shows such. She had the police arrest him and no charges were made and the District Attorney’s office was reportedly stumped. The man says he can sue the City as well as her personally for causing life time disabilities. Dutcher is also facing the legal implications of her and City Attorney Dan Kokosvek, whom reportedly collaborated last June and July to purposefully provide misinformation to Pueblo Reform, a citizen group, blocking their legislation from being on the November 2015 ballot. The group is suing the City and filing complaints with the State Ethical Commission on both Dutcher and Kokosvek for their legal misconduct in which they violated election laws and the Charter of Pueblo.
In addition City Manager Sam Azad is under fire by Police Union employees, as he received an about 95% disapproval rating and the City Council as well. Some officers say that the real “elephant” is Council who is responsible for the budgeting for the Police Department and that Council has left police without the funding and tools to provide Public Safety which taxpayers are paying for. In a meeting February 1st Council and other City Officials had a “conversation” about the Union survey. See followup story by Southern Colorado Independent Magazine.

 

Southern Colorado Independent Magazine publisher Jenny Paulson is a 20 year veteran niche magazine publisher, an independent journalist, photographer, publisher, blogger, activist, world traveler and a proud mom. She has worked as a political activist, for a lobbyist, a pr firm, the governor and for a representative in Washington DC. She has lived in her home of Pueblo, CO ten years.

About Jenny Paulson 88 Articles

Southern Colorado Independent Magazine publisher Jenny Paulson is a 20 year veteran niche magazine publisher, an independent journalist, photographer, publisher, blogger, activist, world traveler and a proud mom. She has worked as a political activist, for a lobbyist, a pr firm, the governor and for a representative in Washington DC. She has lived in her home of Pueblo, CO ten years.