By Associated Press - Wednesday, February 17, 2021

CHICAGO (AP) - A former Cook County judge who was ousted after video captured her putting a child in a courtroom lock-up reserved for adults is seeking a return to the bench.

The video shows Jackie Portman-Brown in February 2020 taking her grandniece into a holding cell and leaving her inside alone. Portman-Brown was subsequently reassigned out of felony cases and in November ,voters rejected her retention bid, giving her 59.4% of the vote instead of the necessary 60%.

The Chicago Tribune reported Wednesday that Portman-Brown has applied this year for an associate judgeship, which must be approved by judges, not voters.



Portman-Brown could not be reached for comment, however in a video interview posted on Facebook by her campaign last year she said the incident in the lockup was a private family moment.

“It was just unfortunate that it happened in the courtroom,” she said.

Portman-Brown is one of about 250 applicants vying for 10 associate judge positions. A committee that includes Chief Judge Timothy Evans will reduce the number of applicants to 20 finalists, and circuit judges will decide who will ascend to the bench.

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