The Santa Barbara County district attorney charged Superior Court Judge Diana Hall with eight criminal counts Monday stemming from campaign finance violations that allegedly took place during her 2002 re-election campaign.
The DA alleges Hall received an illegal $20,000 campaign contribution from her ex-lover, Deidra Dykeman. Authorities learned of Hall’s alleged misconduct in August 2003 after she testified during her own criminal trial on charges related to a domestic dispute that occurred between her and Dykeman in December of 2002.
Hall allegedly did not report the $20,000 contribution on campaign finance reports – which is against state law – because she did not want her relationship with Dykeman made public.
The misdemeanor charges against Hall include failure to disclose campaign contributions, receiving an unlawful contribution and unlawfully combining outside contributions with personal funds. Each of the eight counts carries a fine of up to $10,000 and/or a six-month prison sentence, or a payment of three times the amount that that was not properly reported.
Assistant DA Christie Stanley said the decision of whether or not to fire Hall on account of the campaign contribution is not her office but rather up to the state.
“It’s up to the Council of Judicial Performance, and we did provide them with a copy of our information and charges against her,” Stanley said. “They will do whatever it is they do, and it’s up to us to prosecute the criminal charges.”
Stanley said the California Fair Political Practices Commission could also file a civil lawsuit against Hall on similar charges.
Hall will be arraigned in the Santa Maria arraignment court June 1, 2005.
In December 2002, Santa Barbara sheriff’s deputies arrested Hall for driving under the influence of alcohol after she left the scene of a domestic dispute between herself and Dykeman. At the time, police alleged Hall pulled out a loaded .38-caliber pistol and threatened to shoot one of Dykeman’s dogs.
Hall was acquitted of the brandishing-a-weapon charge but was convicted of drunk driving. She returned to the bench in September of 2003 after having her license revoked for 90 days and being ordered to pay a $1,600 fine and attend alcohol-counseling meetings.