On Friday, April 5, 2024, The Daytona Beach News-Journal reported that disgraced former 7th Circuit Judge Scott DuPont filed paperwork to run for another judgeship, seeking to return to the bench after being removed by the Florida Supreme Court in 2018.

DuPont was unanimously removed from office six years ago after numerous judicial canon and campaign finance violations during his 2016 reelection campaign against Malcolm Anthony. An investigation found that DuPont fabricated false criminal records about Anthony’s wife and daughter and posted them online without verifying the accuracy of the information. The Supreme Court also determined that DuPont violated canons by ordering an unlawful seizure of $180 from a defendant during a family court hearing.

Additional violations included holding a first appearance hearing without attorneys present in order to suit his campaign schedule. The justices found DuPont showed “reckless disregard for the truth” and that his actions damaged confidence in the integrity of the judiciary. It was the most severe recommendation of removal from the Judicial Qualifications Commission, which DuPont is the first 7th Circuit judge to receive since 1997.

In the wake of being removed from the bench, the Florida Bar also suspended DuPont from practicing law for 90 days in 2019. However, DuPont has since filed papers last week to run for circuit judge against incumbent Rose Marie Preddy in Group 11 of the 7th Circuit, which covers Volusia, Flagler, Putnam, and St. Johns counties.

If elected, it would allow DuPont a path to return as a judge just six years after being deemed unfit for office by the state Supreme Court. His candidacy filing comes ahead of the qualifying period from April 22-26.



Source: The Daytona Beach News-Journal