Judge Accused of Posting Inappropriate TikTok Videos

New Jersey judge lip-synched explicit lyrics, complaint states
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 5, 2023 12:49 PM CDT
Judge Accused of Posting Inappropriate TikTok Videos
Stock photo.   (Getty Images/joebelanger)

A New Jersey Superior Court judge is accused of having very poor judgment when it came to what he posted on TikTok. According to a complaint filed against Gary Wilcox, some of the dozens of videos the judge posted under the name "Sal Tortorella" over a two-year period featured him lip-syncing to rap songs with explicit lyrics, NorthJersey.com reports. Wilcox was wearing judicial robes in some of the videos and at least one was filmed in his chambers, according to the complaint. Other videos show Wilcox "partially dressed while lying in bed," the complaint states. Wilcox, a Harvard Law School graduate who has been a judge since 2011, presides over criminal cases in Bergen County.

The complaint filed by the state's Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct states the committee found 11 of around 40 videos posted between 2021 and April this year to be inappropriate, "including songs which contained profanity, graphic sexual references to female and male body parts, and/or racist terms." In the video allegedly filmed in his chambers, the judge lip-synchs the lyrics, "I mean business! You think you can run up on me and whip my monkey ass?" per CBS. The complaint states that the 58-year-old judge "demonstrated disrespect for the Judiciary and an inability to conform to the high standards of conduct expected of judges."

Robert Hille, the judge's lawyer, says he is reviewing the complaint, the New York Times reports. "I don't think that at the end of the day anybody is going to believe there was any desire to do any harm here," he says. "Hindsight is 20-20." Of the music cited in the complaint—including "Get Down" by Nas, which has lyrics about a courtroom shooting—Hille says, "This is music that's out there in the public. And clearly it elicits a different response depending on who is listening." CBS adds this detail: "According to the complaint, Wilcox celebrated having 100 followers at one point." The TikTok account appears to have been taken down. (More TikTok stories.)

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