Ark. Supreme Court orders Special Judge(s) to take over Mike Maggio's cases

The Arkansas Supreme Court ordered a special judge or judges to take over embattled Circuit Judge Mike Maggio's cases.

An order filed Monday by Arkansas Chief Justice Jim Hannah stated:{}"The supreme court has been advised that court operations in the Twentieth Judicial Circuit, Division 2, have been disrupted, and that the orderly administration of justice has been severely compromised, due, in part, to recusal issues."The order goes on to say a special judge, or judges, will be appointed to hear all pending cases in Division 2 while the order is in effect.The Supreme Court ruling does not remove Maggio from his judicial bench and doesn't stop him from receiving his annual salary of $138,000.Maggio acknowledged earlier in the month that he posted comments on a Louisiana State University fan message board, Tiger Droppings, under the pseudonym "geauxjudge."{}Those message board posts already removed him from at least one case earlier in March. {}A plaintiff filed a motion to transfer in her divorce proceedings in Maggio's court, citing the posts as being, "sexist, racist and otherwise inappropriate."Arkansas's Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission confirmed investigations into Maggio, including violations of campaign contribution rules. {}Maggio ended his campaign for a seat on the Arkansas Court of Appeals because of the investigation. {}The Supreme Court mentioned in their court order on Monday, the order has no bearing on that investigation.Without a case load, whether Maggio still has to report to work is debatable, especially since Arkansas's Supreme Court has never had to appoint a special judge in the case of potential "recusal issues," in the past. {}"I just don't have any sort of precedent to be able to guess what might happen next," said Stephanie Harris, communications counsel for the Arkansas Supreme Court.