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Wadleigh, Ralph 1994 Evaluation


Sixteenth Judicial District - Otero County Court Judge

Honorable Ralph N. Wadleigh

Retention Year: 1994
Recommendation: Retain


Judge Ralph N. Wadleigh was appointed to the bench in 1988. Prior to the appointment he attended Otero Junior College, served two years as a medic in the military, attended Colorado A&M and graduated from Colorado University Law School in 1958.

In 1958, Judge Wadleigh opened a private practice and also served as Deputy District Attorney from 1959 – 1972. Presently, Judge Wadleigh is maintaining a private practice as well as serving as County Judge. He is a “90%” County Judge which means that the caseload of the Otero County Court is determined to require 90% of a full-time equivalent judge. As judge, he is responsible for presiding over traffic cases, civil cases and misdemeanors. Judge Wadleigh lists real estate, probate, water and local government as areas of specialization.

Attorneys, law enforcement personnel and courthouse personnel consistently gave Judge Wadleigh high ratings on the evaluation surveys.

Judge Wadleigh noted hearing more domestic violence cases in the last five years with an average of three per week. He also stated people were resorting to the courts to resolve their social ills in a variety of areas. Judge Wadleigh expressed frustration over the lack of facilities to place offenders, i.e., additional county jail, drug and alcohol treatment centers and a placement center for the developmentally disabled offender of which he has two or three cases per year.

The Commission found Judge Wadleigh to be thoughtful, straightforward, and genuine. He is well-informed and innovative.

The 16th Judicial District Commission on Judicial Performance recommends that Judge Ralph N. Wadleigh BE RETAINED.