Rochester City Court Judge Leticia Astacio is appealing her removal from the bench to the Court of Appeals.
Her attorney, Robert Julian, sent a letter to Chief Judge Janet DiFiore saying that his client does not accept the determination of the Commission on Judicial Conduct and wants a Court of Appeals review.
The commission recommended that Astacio be removed from the bench. She would have been automatically removed from office by the Court of Appeals if she had not appealed, according to the commission.
Astacio was suspended from office last month after she was arrested for allegedly attempting to make an illegal firearms purchase at a Dick’s Sporting Goods in Henrietta.
In 2016, she was charged with DWI after a trooper encountered her in a badly damaged automobile on the side of the road, and the judge reacted to the trooper in a “profane and angry” manner, according to the commission.
After the conviction, Astacio twice violated the terms of her conditional sentence, the commission said. In November 2016, she pleaded guilty to attempting to start her car after testing positive for alcohol in her system on her ignition interlock device.
In May 2017, she failed to submit a court-ordered alcohol test and failed to appear in court because she had left the country for a long trip to Thailand.
The commission also said that Astacio engaged in misconduct on the bench for failing to recuse herself from the arraignment of a former client and making “discourteous, insensitive and undignified” comments in court, including telling a sheriff’s deputy to use physical force to contain an unruly defendant and laughing during a sexual abuse case when a defense attorney said the victim in the case had “buyer’s remorse.”
“Our case is with the Court of Appeals, not the court of public opinion,” said Julian of Robert F. Julian, during an April 24 interview after the commission announced its decision. He could not be reached for comment Thursday.
Astacio, who was elected to a 10-year term in 2015, is paid $187,200. On May 8, the Court of Appeals extended her suspension.