PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The Pittsburgh NAACP says they want a full investigation from the Judicial Conduct Board of Pennsylvania into the Pittsburgh judge who is accused of calling a black juror “Aunt Jemima.”
KDKA’s Andy Sheehan learned on Tuesday that career prosecutor and current Allegheny County Common Pleas Judge Mark Tranquilli was re-assigned after sources say he allegedly made racially-charged remarks in a closed-door meeting.
The meeting came at the conclusion of a drug trial two weeks ago in which Assistant DA Ted Dutkowski said Tranquilli “was not happy” the jury rendered a ‘not guilty’ verdict.
In chambers, Tranquilli questioned the assistant DA about why he had not moved to strike or block a black woman juror during jury selection weeks before.
“You weren’t out of strikes when you decided to put Aunt Jemima on the jury,” Tranquilli is alleged to say.
The document alleges Tranquilli said of the woman who had her hair in a headdress, “As soon as she sat down, she crossed her arms and looked like this.”
Dutokwski said the judge then crossed his arms and scowled, then continued: “You know darn well that when she goes home to her baby daddy, he’s probably slinging heroin too.”
The NACP says the Judicial Conduct Board should consider removing Tranquilli from the bench.