Commission on Judicial Performance

By Joseph Serna
May 14, 2015

Like most judges, Kern County Superior Court Judge John Fielder did not necessarily carve out a reputation of being warm and cuddly on the bench.

But on Thursday, a judicial oversight panel publicly admonished Fielder for being especially heavy-handed. The panel said the judge intimidated court administrators and attorneys.

It was the fourth time that Fielder has been disciplined by the state in his 33-year career.
43 California judges were reprimanded for misconduct last year

The judge abused his authority and violated several canons he was assigned to uphold, including promoting confidence in judicial integrity and impartiality and avoiding allowing personal relationships to influence his conduct, the Commission on Judicial Performance found.

In the most current case, the commission found that Fielder intimidated the court administrator, who handles staffing, in 2013 when he said the judges “would get together and fire” her.

The administrator was attempting to reassign a clerk from Judge Cory Woodward’s room because the clerk and Woodward were having sex, including inside the courthouse, and court staff had complained.

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