NEWORLEANS-- Unanswered questions about where suspended Juvenile Court Judge Yolanda King hangs her robe at night were left even murkier Wednesday after she listed three different addresses in qualifying for re-election.
King was one of the first candidates for office to submit qualifying papers, but when it came time for her to list her address, she was all over the map.
King's paperwork raised eyebrows because she is facing felony charges accusing her of lying about her domicile when she won the seat in a major upset last year.
In qualifying to run last spring, King filled out paperwork stating that she lived in New Orleans at a time when she claimed a homestead exemption in St. Tammany Parish. As a result, the attorney general's office indicted King in May on charges of filing a false public record and violating state election law.
In qualifying Wednesday, King initially listed a New Orleans post office box as her domicile, a legal impossibility since domicile is considered a person's 'primary residence.'
But half an hour later, King filed another notice of candidacy listing the post office box as a mailing address and 420 Loyola Ave., Suite 210, as her domicile, another impossibility because no such address exists.
Based on the suite number, though, it appears that King meant to list the address of Orleans Parish Juvenile Court, 421 Loyola Ave. But the likelihood that she lives there seems remote, not only because the courthouse is not a residence, but King has been suspended from the bench since May.
King, however, listed a third address on a subsequent qualifying form. That address, 5149 Basinview Dr., is a small townhouse in eastern New Orleans, according to the Assessor's Office.
King's criminal defense attorney, Clarence Roby, said his client listed multiple addresses out of an abundance of caution because of the charges she is facing based on how she filled out the forms last year.
'All of those snafus came about because of what she's been dealing with,' Roby said. 'It was an attempt on her part to correct the papers based on what she's been facing.'
Roby said King initially listed the post office box by mistake. She then tried to correct the problem by using the court's address as a way to protect her privacy, he said, copying a strategy used previously by another judicial candidate.
'Given all the scrutiny that's been surrounding her, I guess she was trying to exercise an abundance of caution,' Roby said.
Qualifying for the seat went forward despite a legal challenge by Mayor Mitch Landrieu's office to abolish the seat.
Landrieu last week filed a lawsuit to scrap the seat in an attempt to shrink juvenile court from six seats to four. In the city's motion, Landrieu invoked the newly passed state law that allows for the elimination of two judgeships once they become vacant by 'death, resignation, retirement (or) disqualification.'
But Secretary of State Tom Schedler kept the election on the ballot, and his decision was upheld by Civil Court Judge Wilson Fields of Baton Rouge. The Landrieu administration filed an emergency appeal, but that hasn't been ruled on.
With qualifying proceeding normally, King drew a challenger shortly after she submitted her papers. 'Niki' Roberts, an assistant district attorney, qualified to run for the seat.
A third candidate, attorney Cynthia Samuel, also indicated her intention to qualify. Samuel, who ran unsuccessfully for the seat last year, was filed the formal complaint about King's domicile that ultimately led to her indictment.