On Friday, September 30, 2022, Saugerties town justice Claudia Andreassen resigned halfway through her term amid an investigation by the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct.

On February 5, 2020, April 2, 2021, December 1, 2021, and May 3, 2022, the Commission informed Judge Andreassen that it was looking into a total of six complaints against her, including:

– Her relationship with the Sauge1tics Police Department was at times adversarial;

– She violated various prohibitions on campaign activity by judges;

– She was discourteous toward and made disrespectful comments about court staff and courtroom spectators;

– She attempted to effectuate certain staffing decisions without involving her co-judge or the town board; and

– She failed to maintain professional competence in the law.

In the stipulation dated September 2, 2022, Judge Andreassen agreed never to seek or accept judicial office at any time in the future.

The stipulation reads:

“Judge Andreassen understands that, should she abrogate the terms of this Stipulation and hold any judicial position at any time in the future, the Commission’s investigation of the complaints could be revived, she could be served with a Formal Written Complaint on authorization of the Commission, and the matter could proceed to a hearing before a referee.”

In a press release, Commission Administrator Robert H. Tembeckjian stated that:

“Judges are obliged to be competent in the law, to be and appear fair in the administration of justice, and to be courteous toward all with whom they deal in an official capacity. The multiple complaints against Judge Andreassen were serious, and her permanent departure from the bench was appropriate.”

Andreassen, a non-lawyer judge, had been a Justice of the Saugerties Town Court since 2012. Her current term would have expired on December 31, 2024.

A copy of the original filing can be found here.