Sheriff pleads guilty to groping celebrity judge at law enforcement conference

A Georgia sheriff who assaulted TV judge Glenda Hatchett has pleaded guilty to a charge of sexual battery. Not that Bleckley County Sheriff Kristopher Coody will have to do any time for assaulting Hatchett, the first Black woman to preside over a state court in Georgia and lately a celebrity with her own show. He got off with a year on probation, reports ABC News.

An Atlanta attorney, Hatchett starred in the courtroom reality shows "Judge Hatchett" and "The Verdict With Judge Hatchett." She also represented the family of Philando Castile, a black driver who was shot dead by a Minnesota police officer in a Twin Cities suburb, in a highly publicized lawsuit.

In January 2022, she attended a meeting of the Georgia Sheriff's Association as the guest of a retired Georgia sheriff who introduced her to several colleagues. One of the sheriffs she met at the convention hotel's bar outside Atlanta was Coody.

Hatchett said she told Coody she wasn't sure where his home county was located. The sheriff pointed a finger at her chest, she said, and replied: "In the heart of Georgia." She said he then repeated those words as he grabbed her left breast and began squeezing and rubbing it.

Hatchett sought charges almost immediately: "I don't want to be the poster woman for this, but I think it's important for me to be very candid… It's important that other victims see me holding him accountable."