EDGEWOOD — The chief court reporter for the Edgewood Town Court has been placed on administrative leave for allegedly making racist comments about a deputy prosecutor on at least two occasions.
Madison County Prosecutor Rodney Cummings said comments were made by court reporter Jaime Hudson in reference to deputy prosecutor Rosemary Khoury, who is Black and assigned to the Edgewood Court.
Scott Norrick, judge of the Edgewood Town Court, said Hudson has been placed on paid administrative leave effective Friday.
He said the Indiana State Police will be asked to conduct an investigation into the two incidents.
Becky Hughes, diversion program coordinator in the prosecutor’s office, said in May and again in June that there were discussions with court personnel about reopening the court via Zoom meetings.
Hughes said Hudson said in May that she was tired of Khoury using the “Black card” and used an expletive and the “N-word” in reference to the prosecutor.
She said a second incident took place in June and Hudson again used the same terms in reference to Khoury.
Cummings said there has to be a safe environment provided for citizens and employees of color at the court.
“I have no confidence that the fair and impartial administration of justice can occur when the person sitting next to the judge in court harbors such racist sentiments,” he said in a press release.
Cummings said he talked to Norrick the week of June 15 about the two incidents and wanted Norrick to take care of the situation.
Norrick said he first learned of the allegations on June 24.
Cummings said Norrick didn’t answer his phone or respond to text messages for three days.
Cummings said effective Monday, no one from his office will be assigned to the Edgewood Town Court and all previously filed cases will be moved to either the Elwood, Anderson or Pendleton courts or one of the Madison Circuit Court divisions.
“She was working Thursday,” Cummings said of the employee. “(Norrick) took action after the media was contacted.”
Cummings said that initially Norrick said the court reporter was a town employee and the town was taking over the investigation.
“I gave him appropriate time to dismiss her,” he said. “He (Norrick) chose not to take any action.”
Norrick said he has conflicting reports of what was actually said from Hughes and a member of the Edgewood court staff who was present for at least one of the incidents.
“If this turns out to be true, it was inappropriate,” Norrick said.
Norrick said if no cases are filed, the town won’t be able to have court.
“Cases will be delayed,” he said. “It’s unfortunate for our community, but I can’t control what Mr. Cummings does.”