Shrewsbury district judge now charged in second criminal case
Shrewsbury-area District Judge Jeffrey Scott Joy — already accused of indecently assaulting a woman — is now charged with official bribery in an unrelated matter.
State police allege Joy offered to vacate a defendant's court fines and expunge her criminal record if she modeled lingerie for him, according to charging documents filed Wednesday.
Last week, police filed misdemeanor charges against Joy of official oppression, indecent assault and harassment. They say he inappropriately touched and licked a woman whose boyfriend had appeared in Joy's courtroom.
Joy, 50, of 13 S. 4th St. in New Freedom, was sent a summons for the charges, according to court records.
On Monday, three days after Joy's criminal case was made public, a different woman came forward to make a complaint about him, police said.
According to a news release from the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office, officials "have reason to believe Judge Joy may have engaged in inappropriate, corrupt, or criminal contact with other citizens who appeared in his court."
The release urges any with information about Joy to call the Loganville barracks of state police at (717) 428-1011.
The allegations: According to charging documents in the alleged bribery case, state police Trooper Jonathan Colarusso, lead investigator in the original case against Joy, was leaving the barracks Monday afternoon when he saw a woman in the parking lot who "appeared noticeably anxious and nervous."
The 39-year-old woman said she needed to speak to police "regarding encounters she had with Judge Joy that were similar to what she read about in the news," documents state.
The woman had previously pleaded guilty in Joy's office to summary harassment stemming from a domestic dispute with her boyfriend, police said. On Dec. 1, she returned to Joy's office to ask that her fine payments be restructured, which Joy agreed to do, according to police.
During that meeting, Joy asked the woman about her son joining a local youth sports program and also inquired about her employment, police said. Charging documents indicate the woman was an exotic dancer at the time.
Unannounced visit: Joy showed up unannounced at the woman's home that evening and one of her children let him inside, police said.
The woman told state police she was shocked a judge would come to her home, according to documents.
Joy asked about her son joining the sports program, but the woman believed that was a ruse, documents state.
"(She) then stated that Joy then offered to vacate her court fines and expunge her criminal record provided she would 'model' items of lingerie clothing ... for him," documents allege.
The woman refused and reminded Joy that her children were nearby, and the judge left a short time later, police said.
She told troopers she began receiving numerous calls from blocked numbers, which she didn't answer, and received at least two or three voicemail messages from Joy between Dec. 1 and Dec. 9, according to documents. In each of the messages, the judge inquires about her son joining the youth sports program, police said.
Phone records: Phone records confirm that at least one phone call was made to the woman from Joy's home, according to police.
The woman also provided police with an email she sent to an acquaintance, dated Dec. 1, in which she describes "her unusual and inappropriate encounter with Judge Joy from earlier in the day," documents state.
She told police she traveled out of town Dec. 9 and warned her 18-year-old baby sitter to "beware of the judge from her court case" and not to open the door to him, according to documents.
Joy showed up the same day, police allege.
Documents state the baby sitter told troopers she heard the knob on the back door being jostled about 4:10 p.m., saw a man standing at the door and heard one of the kids shout, "That's the judge!"
Photo of SUV: Joy mentioned the youth sports program, but the baby sitter ordered him off the property and took a photograph of his SUV, which she turned over to police, documents state.
"(The baby sitter) said that Joy remained parked out in front of the house for several minutes, which scared her," according to documents.
Colarusso noted in charging documents that when he interviewed Joy on the first case, Joy stated he had never gone to the home of a victim or defendant.
"In the course of this interview it was determined that Joy made many false or inconsistent statements," Colarusso wrote.
Joy was arraigned Wednesday on two counts of bribery in official and political matters, which are third-degree felonies, according to court records. He also was arraigned on the misdemeanors of official oppression and harassment.
He is free on $50,000 unsecured bail. Unsecured bail means the judge did not have to come up with any money to be released, but could forfeit the entire amount if he fails to attend court proceedings.
Joy's attorney, Chris Ferro, has said the allegations are false and without merit, and Wednesday he responded to the latest charges.
"This is a good example of opportunism and people seeking efforts to kick a good man when he is down," he said in a text. "We will address the specifics surrounding these allegations in court."
First case: Joy was first charged on Friday for an incident that allegedly happened in a woman's Glen Rock apartment in March.
The woman, who was 30 at the time, initially met the judge at a hearing for her boyfriend.
She told police Joy later came to her home, groped her buttocks and breast, then licked her breast, according to charging documents.
Joy's attorney, Chris Ferro, says the allegations are false and without merit.
"This is a good example of opportunism and people seeking efforts to kick a good man when he is down," Ferro wrote in a text. "We will address the specifics surrounding these allegations in court."
York County President Common Pleas Judge Stephen P. Linebaugh on Friday ordered Joy removed from all court duties until further notice.
Linebaugh's order also recused all York County judges from presiding over Joy's case, meaning an out-of-county judge must be brought in to hear it.
In April, Linebaugh suspended Joy from hearing criminal cases. That's about the same time state police launched their initial investigation.
Senior District Judge John Zepp of Adams County is now hearing cases in Joy's district.
The district handles cases for the boroughs of Jacobus, Loganville, Glen Rock, Shrewsbury, New Freedom and Railroad, and for Springfield and Shrewsbury townships.
Joy's background: Before becoming district judge, Joy spent 10 years as mayor of New Freedom and two years as a borough council member.
He volunteered for more than 30 years with New Freedom's fire company, spent a decade on the Southern Regional Police Commission, and coached various youth sports, according to his district judge website.
Joy has also spent many years in various paid and volunteer positions in the county's emergency services, including 21 years as New Freedom's emergency-management coordinator and eight years as a planner and trainer for the York County Office of Emergency Management, according to the website.
Preliminary hearings in both cases are set for Sept. 18, according to court records.
— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at email@example.com.