It was reported today by the Arkansas Times that former circuit judge Mike Maggio received the maximum 10 year sentence from federal judge Brian Miller. The case involved accepting a bribe to reduce a nursing home verdict in Faulkner County from $5.2 million to $1.0 million. In imposing the maximum sentence that was in line with the sentencing report, Judge Miller remarked that a dirty judge was more dangerous than a dope dealer, because a dirty judge made the entire public lose faith in the entire judicial system.
Judge Maggio had sought to withdraw his guilty plea in recent days. After that went nowhere, he begged for leniency and mercy due to a myriad of unconvincing reasons. It is unknown where he will serve his time. He can apparently receive some sentence reductions if he begins complying with his plea agreement and cooperates with federal investigators about the actions of his co-conspirators.
As an editorial aside, I expect Mr. Maggio to begin cooperating post haste. If he was concerned about serving serious jail time, that possibility just got very, very real. I imagine there are some very concerned parties in Conway and Forth Smith tonight. Gilbert Baker and Michael Morton cannot have much faith that Mr. Maggio will willingly serve out his time when he could minimize it by implicating them with everything he has. This case has long bothered me, as it only serves to confirm what many believe, right or wrong, happens all the time. The damage to the justice system in the public's eye is immeasurable. Updates as they happen.