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The Blotter

The Times' criminal justice team looks behind the scenes and behind the headlines.

June 8, 2010 at 10:39 AM

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Commission blasts King County judge for support of Amanda Knox

Posted by John de Leon

The Washington Commission on Judicial Conduct has filed a complaint against
King County Superior Court Judge Michael Heavey, alleging he violated the state's Code of Judicial Conduct for his support of Amanda Knox, who was convicted of killing her British roommate in Italy.

The alleged violations include writing letters on official court stationery to Italian judicial system officials on behalf of Knox, utilizing King County court staff to type the letters, and
speaking publicly on the case "in an attempt to influence the proceeding," according to the commission.

Judges may not, under the Code of Judicial Conduct, lend the prestige of judicial office to advance the private interests of others, the commission notes.

According to the commission, Heavey is required to file an answer with the commission within 21 days, unless the time is extended by the commission. Once the commission receives the judge's response it will set up a public hearing on the allegations.

Knox, 22, is a former University of Washington student convicted by an Italian court of killing her roommate.

To read more about the commission's allegations, click here.

He declined to speak with The Associated Press on Tuesday, but said he expected to release a statement later.

The 11-member commission is an independent agency created under the state Constitution to assure the integrity and independence of the judiciary. Members are appointed by the governor, judicial associations and the Washington State Bar Association.

We will update this story once we know more.

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