Sens. Sessions, Shelby call for federal judge’s resignation over domestic violence charges

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Photo: MGN Online

(CNN) — Alabama lawmakers are calling on U.S. District Judge Mark Fuller to resign over allegations that he hit his wife “several times with a closed fist” in an Atlanta hotel room in August.

U.S. Sens. Jeff Sessions and Richard Shelby of Alabama released separate statements Thursday calling for Fuller’s resignation. Shelby said Fuller has “lost the confidence of his colleagues and the people of the state of Alabama.” Sessions said Fuller’s “unacceptable personal conduct violates the trust that has been placed in him.”

According to a police report obtained by CNN, Fuller’s wife, Kelli, suffered “lacerations to her mouth and forehead” in the August 9 incident at the downtown Atlanta Ritz-Carlton hotel.

He also grabbed his wife “by her hair, pulling it out,” the report says, leading her to suffer “bruises on her ankle, thigh and knee from being dragged.”

Fuller’s wife was “treated on scene by (paramedics) but refused to be transported to the hospital,” according to news release from the Atlanta Police Department.

Fuller spent the night an Atlanta jail after being charged with misdemeanor battery in the alleged domestic violence incident. Earlier this month, he accepted a pretrial diversion without having to admit guilt. The program, typical for first-time domestic dispute offenders, involves a substance abuse assessment and counseling.

Fuller’s wife was heard on 911 calls telling dispatchers, “Help me, please. Please, help me. He’s beating on me.” She agreed to the terms of the pretrial diversion.

Calls to his attorney were not immediately returned, but in a statement to CNN, Fuller said, “I deeply regret this incident and look forward to working to resolve this issue with my family, where they should be resolved. I look forward to completing the family counseling that I voluntarily began several weeks ago and to successfully completing the requirements of the diversion.”

U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell, D-Alabama, compared Fuller’s infractions to recent incidents in the National Football League.

“If an NFL player can lose his job because of domestic violence then a federal judge should definitely not be allowed to keep his life-time appointment to the federal bench,” she said in a statement.

Sewell said she would support moving forward on an impeachment if Fuller doesn’t resign.

Fuller’s attorney said calls for his client’s resignation are “unwarranted” and said drawing conclusions between Fuller and the “Ray Rice case … represents a failure of critical thinking.”

Fuller was confirmed to the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama in 2002.


  • Red

    If all it takes to be forced to resign is an arrest, then the POLICE are judge and jury, and this is NOT right. The police are not infallible. In fact, most people are not aware of exactly how easy it is to get arrested for domestic violence. People are naively unaware until it happens to them.

  • Michael J. Soroczak

    This is an ultra right wing Judge who is supposedly a family values conservative that has been outspoken on everything contrary to his beliefs. Therefore do not force him to resign. Impeach him. Let him lose what he self righteously imposed on others as morals. He did not live up to his own self proclaimed morals. As for the ignorant comments about someone named Barry all I can say is this, Fifty years ago the country rallied to the phrase ‘I’D RATHER BE DEAD THAN RED.’ Guess what? That phrase has now been turned around. It reads in your case, I’D RATHER BE RED THAN DEAD.’ And quit with the mindless middle school name calling. You are boring and you are trying to be bullying. Guess what dude, In this day and age bullies are dealt with in a highly public manner. Would you like to be exposed?

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