Criminal charge filed against Franklin County Judge Monica Hawkins

A Franklin County Domestic Relations/Juvenile Court judge who was already facing charges of driving under the influence is now facing a criminal charge of obstructing official business.

The second-degree misdemeanor charge was filed Monday in Fairfield County Municipal Court.

Hawkins, 54, had been stopped by Pickerington police around 8:40 p.m. on Jan. 31 after another driver reported an erratic driver.

Hawkins failed several field sobriety tests and was placed under arrest. Police obtained a search warrant for a sample of Hawkins’ blood to determine her blood alcohol level after Hawkins refused to consent to a breath test.

The obstruction charge accuses Hawkins of purposefully preventing police from getting the blood sample by refusing the blood draw at a local hospital.

Court filings said Hawkins had to be held down by a Pickerington police officer and four OhioHealth security officers in an attempt to get a blood sample from her arm.

“Ms. Hawkins continued to bend her arm to make it difficult to have her blood drawn” after being held down, the affidavit says. “Ms. Hawkins’ actions hampered, impeded, or delayed the execution of the search warrant.

Hawkins had already been charged with a marked lane violation and OVI, both misdemeanor traffic offenses.

Her attorney, Brad Koffel, said last week his client had suffered a serious concussion and other injuries and did not have a solid recollection of the night of Jan. 31.

Hawkins has been on the bench since her arrest. She was elected in November to a newly created Domestic Relations and Juvenile Court judge position and has been on the bench since early January.

The Dispatch reached out Monday afternoon to Koffel for comment on the newly filed charge, but did not receive an immediate response.

She is scheduled to appear in Fairfield County Municipal Court on Thursday.

[email protected]

@bethany_bruner