Local News

US Supreme Court passes on former Durham DA's case

Posted October 8, 2014 5:14 p.m. EDT

Durham County District Attorney Tracey Cline speaks during a Feb. 13, 2012, hearing to determine whether she is removed from office.

— The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear a petition by former Durham County District Attorney Tracey Cline to reclaim her job.

Cline lost her job two years ago after she repeatedly accused Superior Court Judge Orlando Hudson of being corrupt and biased against her and asked to have him barred from handling criminal cases in Durham County.

Other Superior Court judges found her complaints to be groundless, and Senior Superior Court Judge Robert Hobgood removed her from office in March 2012, ruling that her allegations had damaged the Durham County justice system.

The North Carolina Court of Appeals upheld Hobgood's decision last October, and the North Carolina Supreme Court declined Cline's request to review her case.

Cline filed a writ of certiorari in April, asking the U.S. Supreme Court to take a look at her case. She argued that the decision to remove her from office violated her First Amendment rights to free speech and that the state law involved in the proceedings violated her due process rights.

The high court on Tuesday said it wouldn't address her petition.

The North Carolina State Bar delayed a disciplinary hearing for Cline until her appeals were exhausted. No date has been set for the hearing, which will determine if she violated rules requiring lawyers to be honest and trustworthy.