DesJardins’ plea not ready; week delay for arraignment

WAILUKU – An arraignment for former 2nd Circuit Family Court Judge Mimi DesJardins was delayed until next week after she said in court Thursday that she wasn’t prepared to enter a plea to a charge of tampering with a government record.

DesJardins resigned from the bench April 23, the same day the criminal complaint was filed in Wailuku District Court, according to the state Judiciary.

The complaint alleges she falsely made, completed or altered or made a false entry in 10 judicial determination of probable cause documents Feb. 17. A judicial determination of probable cause is required to hold someone in custody longer than 48 hours from the time of arrest.

In court Thursday, DesJardins’ attorney, Philip Lowenthal, asked for the one-week delay for DesJardins to enter a plea.

First Circuit District Judge David Lo, who has been assigned to preside over proceedings in DesJardins’ case, granted the request. She is scheduled to appear in court again at 10:30 a.m. Thursday.

At Lowenthal’s request, more than a dozen people who were in the courtroom gallery stood to signify that they were there to support DesJardins.

“There are a number of people, mostly from the Family Court bar on Maui, that have come to court to show their support and aloha for Mimi DesJardins,” Lowenthal said.

DesJardins, 51, was appointed to be a Family Court judge Feb. 28, 2012. She had been a per diem District Court judge since 2006. Before being appointed to the bench, she was in private practice, handling family law and criminal cases since 1997.