Ex-judge allegedly lied to child support referee to free his mistress

His pill-supplying mistress behind bars, one of Knox County’s most prominent judges dialed up the man responsible for her incarceration and spun a web of lies to set her free, newly-revealed court records allege.

Former Knox County Criminal Court Judge Richard Baumgartner faces seven counts of misprision of a felony in U.S. District Court for lying to various people, including a General Sessions judge and state prosecutor, on behalf of his mistress, Deena Castleman, to protect a prescription painkiller conspiracy of which federal prosecutors say Baumgartner was a part.

Portions of a Tennessee Bureau of Investigation probe of Baumgartner’s misdeeds, along with a News Sentinel investigation, revealed the details of six of those charges. But the story behind a seventh charge — that Baumgartner lied to a Knox County Juvenile Court referee — had been kept under wraps.



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