Court Temporarily Halts Recall Effort of California Judge

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A court has temporarily halted the campaign seeking to oust a Northern California judge for a light sexual-assault sentence he gave to a college athlete.

Lawyers for both sides said the court on Friday stopped signature-gathering efforts to determine whether the campaign to recall Santa Clara County Judge Aaron Persky should be a state or county question.

Persky sparked the recall effort when he sentenced former Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner to six months in jail for sexual assault in July 2016.

The Santa Clara County registrar on Friday permitted recall proponents to begin collecting signatures to qualify Persky’s recall for the June ballot.

But the judge’s attorneys argued that recall proponents need permission from the California secretary of state because county judges are state officers.