It's been a tumultuous week for the city of Covington and its municipal court. At Monday's city council meeting, the council voted against reappointing municipal court Judge C. David Strickland to a post he's held the past 16 years. While the council wouldn't share its reasoning with the public, an email accusing Strickland of letting a romantic relationship with a former probation officer cloud his judgment and affect his ability to do his job properly surfaced just days before the council vote.
If you believe the claims made against him, and we're not sure we believe them all, Strickland wasn't fit to continue as municipal judge. Simply having the relationship at that time - he and the former officer are still together - seems like a conflict of interest. By all accounts, Strickland isn't a bad guy. He's just someone who made a bad decision and he's paying for it. It happens to the best of us. It shows how even someone as infallible as a judge can use bad judgment.
Being a judge comes with a lot of responsibility. Like it or not, your life is open for the public to view. Judges and other elected officials live in glass houses. One of the strengths of our laws is that they aim to make public offices transparent.
The bottom line is Judge Strickland failed to honor the oath he took to serve the people of Covington as soon as he started to have a romantic relationship with someone at the workplace and for that, the city had to make a change. Regardless of personal feelings, professionalism must reign supreme. We wish Judge Strickland the best, but we commend the city for making the move.