Criminal Justice

DA's office says judge faked toilet-tank cover attack; jurist now faces multi-count indictment

A village judge in New York state faked a claimed attack last year in which he said he was struck in the head with a toilet-tank cover outside the courthouse he had just exited following an arraignment, authorities contend.

Acting Waterloo village judge Roger Barto is now facing a multi-count indictment which includes charges stemming from the claimed attack, the Seneca County District Attorney announced Monday. Barto is charged with five felonies, including grand larceny, insurance fraud and defrauding the government, and multiple misdemeanors, including making a false incident report and official misconduct, according to the Associated Press and the Finger Lakes Times.

A number of charges relate to benefits Barto obtained from the village and county and he is additionally accused of stealing gasoline from a local cemetery where he also works.

Barto’s lawyer, Gary Muldoon, says none of the charges in the indictment relates to Barto’s job as a judge, which he continues to hold, the Times reports. Last year, Muldoon described the investigation concerning his client as “bungled.”

Barto pleaded not guilty at his arraignment and was released without posting any bail.

Media reports about the claimed Aug. 31, 2013 attack on Barto said he was hospitalized for weeks afterward. Police and the DA declined to discuss with the Times what they contend actually occurred that night.

See also: “Judge is hospitalized after attack outside courthouse”

Democrat & Chronicle: “Waterloo judge accused of lying about attack”

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