Criminal and civil charges against McDowell County Magistrate Steve Cox are dismissed with prejudice.
An indictment that was filed against Magistrate Steve Cox of McDowell County was dismissed with prejudice on Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. A three judge panel heard a petition by a former attorney, Kevin Wade, to have Magistrate Cox removed from his position. The panel found that the petition did not have any merit.
Mr. Wade had filed a criminal and civil suit against Magistrate Cox, after the magistrate denied petitions from Wade that were asking for Personal Safety Orders against various law enforcement officers in McDowell County. The panel found that Magistrate Cox was innocent of any criminal charges in the case.
In the Dismissal Order, the judge wrote that Mr. Wade abused the legal process by appearing at the McDowell County Grand Jury and obtained an indictment in the case. In fact, Judge Omar Aboulhosn included a famous quote in the dismissal order from New York State Chief Judge Sol Wachtler that was in Tom Wolfe's The Bonfire of the Vanities which stated "a grand jury would 'indict a ham sandwich,' if that's what you wanted."
Judge Aboulhosn also stated in the order that the taxpayers and citizens of McDowell County are victims in this case. That is because there were hundreds, and possibly thousands, of dollars in expenses because of Mr. Wade's actions. Those expenses included the appointment of a three judge panel in the civil matter, a special judge for the criminal matter and a special prosecutor to represent the people of McDowell County.
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