On Thursday, February 22, 2024, 8 News Now reported that Clark County District Court Judge Erika Ballou is facing two new ethics charges from Nevada’s judicial conduct commission over comments she made in previous court cases.

According to records from the commission, Judge Ballou had previously come under scrutiny for remarks made during sentencing hearings in 2021 and 2022. In the 2021 incident, Judge Ballou seemingly expressed that a Black defendant had reason to flee from police during a vehicle pursuit on the Las Vegas Strip. She said “there being no reason to run from the police, clearly you’re not a Black person in the United States of America, because there are absolute reasons to run from the police.”

In 2022, Judge Ballou made additional comments about police officers during another separate sentencing. Specifically, she told the defendant “You’re a Black man in America. You know you don’t want to be nowhere where cops are,” according to the complaint. She also said she avoids interactions with police as a middle-aged Black woman out of concern for her safety.

The commission asserts these statements violate judicial ethics requiring impartiality. Judge Ballou is already facing charges related to social media activity, including a photo posted to Facebook that showed her in a hot tub with two public defenders. A caption with the photo referred to one of the defenders’ physical appearance.

The judge responded to potential discipline over these past incidents with song lyrics on social media using explicit language. She has declined to comment on the multiple ethics complaints. This marks the latest scrutiny of Judge Ballou, who made headlines in 2016 for refusing to remove a Black Lives Matter pin in court contrary to a judicial order.



Source: 8 News Now