Florida Judge Steps Down, Laments Privacy Invasion Following Media Reports of His Manhunt Profile

Davidkw2-600x450A judge in the Florida Keys said his recent decision to retire early came after a number of media outlets began posting stories and information about his Manhunt profile – a move the judge called an “inappropriate invasion of my privacy.”

The AP reports:

Judge David Audlin announced in April that he was retiring with four years left on his term. Friday was the Monroe County chief circuit judge's last day.

A blogger found a profile for Audlin in January on Manhunt, a website that bills itself as the world's biggest gay hookup site, The Miami Herald reported. The next day a website called Above the Law posted a story about the blog.

Audlin, 56, did nothing illegal and no one has called on him to resign. But Audlin said after contemplating the matter for several months he decided to return to private practice.

"I'm looking forward to my constitutional rights being restored — my right to privacy and to be left alone in my private life," he said Friday.

16thCircuit Judges1Audlin [pictured far right below] said he has never tried to hide his sexuality.

The Miami Herald added:

Audlin contended that a judge’s personal life should be kept off limits if it does not interfere with his ability to be a good judge, be fair to people and have a proper, professional demeanor. “I think some people look at a gay judge’s personal life as being interesting or salacious. I suppose it’s the times we live in. This whole matter has nothing to do with my service to the people or my work as a judge.”

The comments under the postings about Audlin’s profile, which included his sexual preference and size of his genitalia, were mostly negative. And while Audlin repeated that his profile was supposed to remain on the private site, he added: “I don’t think to gay people it was unusual or extreme. I guess it’s offensive to others with more conservative, religious beliefs. I get that.”

The Keys law community has had nothing but good things to say publicly about Audlin as a judge and person since he announced his retirement.

During his eight-year tenure, Audlin’s most significant decision came in 2008, when he ruled that the 1977 ban on adoption by gays and lesbians was unconstitutional.

Gov. Rick Scott will appoint a judge to fill Audlin's vacancy. 

Comments

  1. vg says

    Did he lie about his age on the profile? He’s entitled to a private life, but his apparently choosing to lie about his age doesn’t reflect well on a judge.

  2. Princely says

    WTF made him think as a public figure that he had no expectation that someone wouldn’t recognize him on there? Clueless tool.

    Also, posting 45 and being 56? Rookie mistake.

  3. Princely says

    WTF made him think as a public figure that he had no expectation that someone wouldn’t recognize him on there? Clueless tool.

    Also, posting 45 and being 56? Rookie mistake.

  4. Perry says

    Apparently this judge is not very well versed in the law. You have no privacy rights to a PUBLIC (in bold and much bigger letters) profile posted.

  5. says

    I had the pleasure of meeting David while visiting Key West and he is a lovely, generous man. I’m sorry that some people would judge him for something he does in his private life. He has done nothing wrong. Thomas sexually harassed a woman and was still put on our Supreme Court!! I’m am sure his retirement will be peaceful and lovely anyway.

  6. oncemorewithfeeling says

    56 is too young to be that stupid about how apps and the Internet work. If this is an example of his intelligence, then the state is better off without him. On the other hand, it is Florida so whoever replaces him will almost surely be even more stupid.

  7. Luke says

    Just goes to show that gay men hate each other. He is not cheating on his wife or partner. Why can’t the person who recognized him just move on to the next profile? Why do we have to have this witch hunt of who is gay and who is not? The glee that some people react to this is sad.

  8. Perry says

    No hating but he claims invasion of privacy on being “outed” through a PUBLIC profile posted on the INTERNET. It is ridiculous people are trying to make excuses for his poor judgment and lack of knowledge of the law. When you PUBLICLY post something with the intention of the PUBLIC viewing it and responding back then it is no longer your “private life”.

  9. BETTY says

    Everybody is missing the point here: he was on a legal site. What was the purpose of the bloggers/”media” publishing this? It seems more gossipy than anything. What was the actual news value?

  10. David says

    Canon 2 of the Code of Judicial Conduct for the State of Florida’s language is virtually identical to a portion of Canon 2 of the Code of Conduct for U.S. Judges. The Commentary to the federal version states,”An appearance of impropriety occurs when reasonable minds, with knowledge of all the relevant circumstances disclosed by a reasonable inquiry, would conclude that the judge’s honesty, integrity, impartiality, temperament, or fitness to serve as a judge is impaired. Public confidence in the judiciary is eroded by irresponsible or improper conduct by judges. A judge must avoid all impropriety and appearance of impropriety. This prohibition applies to both professional and personal conduct. A judge must expect to be the subject of constant public scrutiny and accept freely and willingly restrictions that might be viewed as burdensome by the ordinary citizen.“ (1) He probably should have exercised more discretion, (2) he certainly shouldn’t have lied about his age, and (3)he’s probably a nice guy who made a poor decision, but he’s been forthright about it and is taking steps to make it right by retiring from his post. What more could anyone ask for?

  11. Huge Gavel says

    He could’ve stayed and fought, but I understand his decision to step down. Probably a nice guy, but definitely poor judgment. Just because something is legal doesn’t it reflects well on a person in a professional capacity. I wish that he had realized this and been able to continue to serve, and to make sure that LGBTs get a fair(er) shake in the judicial system.

  12. steve says

    the amount of sex-shaming in the world is unhealthy… I’d rather have sex than get black-out drunk or all the other unhealthy things people do to reduce stress, etc.

  13. Jon says

    56 years old and still trying to find happiness via loveless sex with strangers, lying to them in order to get it.

    He’s not only pathetic, but also a great illustration of where the hookup lifestyle will lead you if you fall into it. Sure, people might go through a brief window in life in which they hook up. Maybe a few years in college or during military service. But to make it a way of life, year after year, decade after decade – it will hollow you out from the inside. Best thing we can do for ourselves as gay people is delete these hookup apps and pursue love.

  14. JackFknTwist says

    I disagree with most of your snide postings.

    What ever makes you think that the internet/social media gives you all a licence to be malicious and mean spirited ?
    What a series of bitter small minded posts.

    It’s not a matter of a right to privacy; it’s about the twisted little runts who want to bash and bring down anyone at all for a spot in the limelight.
    Forget thirty pieces of silver; most of you come much cheaper.

  15. BETTY says

    Ummm Jon: how do you know he didn’t find love at one point and it didn’t work out for whatever reason and maybe isn’t looking for anything serious at the moment? Many people, straight or gay “play the field” in between relationsips. So unless you know everything about this person, don’t assume. You post a lot of wide assumptions without knowing the background. We get it: you don’t like gay people.

  16. mattl says

    @JACKFKNTWIST Agreed. Most of these comments are ridiculous. When did we become so Puritanical? He hasn’t harmed anyone or done anything illegal. Leave the guy alone!

  17. Perry says

    Oh poor @jackfkntwist misguided about the concept about right to privacy. You don’t have any expectation of privacy when you are in PUBLIC, i.e. post a PUBLIC profile intended for people to actually see and respond to.

  18. JackFknTwist says

    @ PERRY :
    You are completely missing the point.
    I’m not saying anything about the right to privacy in any sphere…..whether you go on Grindr or not.

    That’s not the point; the point is the malevolent, bitter, catty, despicable little bollixes who post their runt mouthings on this page.

    I don’t give a s**t about “the expectation” of privacy; PERRY, I’m writing about decency.
    That distinction has obviously gone over your head.

  19. SpaceCadet says

    People lie about their ages, I’ve experienced many gay men who do this and straight women do it too. I don’t like it but it is the way of the world and largely in gay culture we are told to value youth so that when you reach a certain age you are ignored or become visible. No wonder gay guys start to lie or just leave out their age. I personally find older guys who still look good hot.

    Yeah, not the best idea for such a high-profile public person to have such an open profile on a hookup site even if the intention was to be private. Why post a public head-shot?

    And I think there’s nothing wrong with having loveless sexual encounters. It’s not something I judge either way but we are human and who says we always have to be in a relationship to want a quick sexual gratification that is mutually enjoyable for all parties involved. Get over yourselves prudes.

  20. steve talbert says

    HE WASN’T ACCUSED OF ANYTHING.

    He is embarrassed and doesn’t want the attention to his personal life, so he went back to private life in private practice. No difference with other public figures and National Enquirer, Star, etc.

    The paper published gossip taken from a PUBLIC site where he himself posted easily verified personal info (inaccurate) about himself. Unfortunately, he created his own problem.

    It says nothing of his abilities as a judge. Just that he realizes that not being a public figure is better for how he wants to live his life. This is as it should be.

    The bad part is the fact that his replacement will most likely be a complete tool – given the appointment by the governor.

  21. shawnthesheep says

    Wow,
    The amount of shaming, moralizing and finger-wagging on here is rather astonishing. What a bunch of joyless trolls most of you are. The fact that this guys has a manhunt profile is not proof of some moral failing or that he lives some kind of pathetic, meaningless existence. I think the judge’s comments about privacy were less about constitutional protections and more about the fact that he didn’t think the media should be reporting on a part of his private life that has nothing to do with his job in the public sphere.

    If a single hetero judge had a profile on Christian Mingle or Match.com, I doubt the media would be rushing to make a story out of it.

  22. Jon says

    Betty:

    No, sorry hon. Straight people do not have anything like Grindr or Manhunt, in scope, size or prominence. While of course straight people hook up and even use the internet to do so, very very few make a life of it. They might do so when they are young for a few years, or on a lark on a one-off basis later in life. But internet hookups as a way of life is normal only for a tiny fraction of a percent of people on this planet. Normal people – gay or straight – don’t aspire to live like sailors for their entire lives.

    You say I don’t love gay people. I say you don’t love gay people. Because we have 50 years of evidence that gay people who are embedded in stable, lasting, loving relationships and who are respected by their families and communities, fare very well in terms of mental and emotional health. And the same 50 years’ of evidence shows that gays who engage long term in sex with multiple partners outside of stable relationships fare terribly on almost ever parameter of morbidity and mortality. Both subgroups are gay, but one does great and the other terribly.

    You come here telling people that it doesn’t matter how they live as gay people. You lie to us. So it would seem that you are the one who harbors a terrible indifference to the happiness of gay people.

    ShawntheSheep:

    “The fact that this guys has a manhunt profile is not proof of some moral failing or that he lives some kind of pathetic, meaningless existence.”

    The fact that this guy, at age 56, is reduced to advertising for sexual contact with complete strangers and lying about himself to those strangers in order to trick them into having loveless sex with him – is a good piece of evidence of a sad, pathetic life. It probably didn’t start out that way. No one aspires to wind up like that. It is just that too many people come out and see the highest profile gays – urban white men in NY, SF, LA – and conclude that this is just how people are supposed to be gay. It is a big mistake, which thankfully will diminish with the Millennials and the generations to follow.

  23. JackFknTwist says

    @ JON :
    Two points;
    You’re not judgemental much, are you ?

    Gays, high profile and low profile are everywhere, not just LA; SF; NY;…….and even not just the USA. It’s a big world out beyond the USA.

  24. Fox says

    Like the article says, he did nothing illegal and no one has called on him to resign. So it sounds to me like he’s more embarrassed than anything. And that’s his problem. There really is nothing private about internet profiles. You’re opening yourself up to all kinds of strangers. And even the “right to privacy” he speaks of is not in the Constitution.

  25. BETTY says

    Let’s get one thing straight JON/RICK or whatever other troll name you use: I am not your “hon”.

    Second: there are MANY hook-up sites for straight people. You apparently have not been in the app store lately or on-line. I can name several off the top of my head. Plus, if you think many “legit” straight dating sites aren’t being used for that purpose as well, than you are spending way too much time in your Mom’s basement. Give me a break already. Also, there are MANY more straight bars/clubs in this world and if you think people are going there because it is a church social, you are sadly mistaken.

    “internet hookups as a way of life is normal only for a tiny fraction of a percent of people on this planet”. Normal people – gay or straight – don’t aspire to live like sailors for their entire lives.” Than why are you so fixated on it and paint everyone with the same brush?
    Gay or straight, people are hooking up whether you or I agree with it (I am not advocating hooking up, before you suggest it).

    “You come here telling people that it doesn’t matter how they live as gay people. You lie to us. So it would seem that you are the one who harbors a terrible indifference to the happiness of gay people.” I NEVER SAID ANY OF THIS! Quit making crap up again.

  26. DW says

    Jon/Rick, spare us the small-mindedness and sex-negativity. Like many gay men, I enjoy responsible, respectful casual sex when I am not in a relationship. I’ve have made good buddies and friends via Manhunt and other hookup sites/apps. I even met my long-term partner on one of them.

    Maybe straights don’t use hookup sites quite as much as gay men, but that’s because of women, not straight men, who would be every bit as randy as we are if they had the chance. Boy, are they jealous!

  27. WHATEVER says

    It may not be private…but I think the point was why these “media” outlets splashed his profile all over their sites? What was the point? He did nothing illegal. He did nothing wrong. What was the story they were going after? Nobody has answered this.

  28. leprechaunvict says

    Oh Jon, puh-lease get over your uptight self. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to hook up once in a while (I say this as someone who’s been with my partner for 17 years). He hasn’t been “reduced” to anything. Your whole sex-negative premise is laughable. Who died and made you queen of relationship judgements? You sound like someone who hasn’t gotten laid in years so has decided it’s sour grapes. “None for me means it’s bad for you.” What a sad little prude.

  29. WHATEVER says

    Nah, I think JON is a straight, religious fundy who comes on here just to preach to and condemn us. His other posts and posts of his alias’ are all the same: preachy and holier-than-though. Ignore the troll.

  30. BETTY says

    And he accuses posters of saying things they never said. He did it in one of the Benham brothers/HGTV posts. Accused us of being pro-abortion when NO ONE had even said anything pro-abortion up to that point. When you call him on it and ask him to prove it he moves on to the next story. Ignore him.

  31. Enchantra says

    Homer, it has nothing to do with being perfect. A judge’s property ownership information is restricted on county websites to protect him from people he has convicted or who want to coerce him. So when you exercise that kind of privacy protection, you don’t turn around and list yourself on whoresareus.com.

  32. Bill says

    For those dumping on him, let me suggest watching My Fair Lady or the play on which it is based, Pygmalion:

    Pickering: Tell me, Higgins, are you a man of good character where women are concerned?

    Higgins: Show me a man of good character where women are concerned.

    … OK … this is a gay site so replace “women’ with “men”, but you should get the idea regardless.

    If George Bernard Shaw is too literary, just take the line from Dr. Stangelove (about the Russian Premier in his dacha with his paramour) – “He may be a man of the people, but he is still a man.”

  33. Armando says

    Forget about it Jake, it’s Chinatown, or in this case Florida.

    Jon seems like a jerk, expecting a reasonable comment from him is like waiting for a chicken to have a human baby.

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