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Judge gets $11,000 raise despite skipping 7 months work following DWI conviction

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHAM) - Rochester City Court Judge Leticia Astacio hasn't shown up to work in more than 200 days, but still received a pay raise, increasing her compensation to $187,200 on April 1.

"Do you know how many judges got a raise," Astacio said in a Facebook Live video. " It's not like I went and petitioned for a raise. No... all the judges got raises."

On August 22, 2016, Astacio was found guilty of DWI and ordered not to drink alcohol for one year and an ignition interlock device was placed on her car.

Astacio was in court again two months later after her ignition interlock device records tests positive for alcohol. She tells the Judge she didn't know she wasn't allowed to drink because claiming she never read the terms of her sentence. The charges were dismissed.

After the ignition interlock device on her car registers another positive test for alcohol in April, Astacio buys a one way ticket to Thailand without notifying anyone, including her lawyers, and misses her mandatory court date in May.

She was sentenced to 60 days in jail, three years probation, and six months with an alcohol ankle monitor in July 2017.

The day after she released from jail, her SCRAM device tests once again positive for alcohol. She's sent to jail again on October 23 and isn't released until November 3.

At her hearing in December, the Judge says Astacio has "never acknowledged responsibility for her behaviors. She has demonstrated an utter lack of respect for any and all authorities, as evidenced by her multiple violations." Astacio pleaded guilty to one of the eight alleged probation violations filed against her and is sentenced to time served.

Employees at the Hall of Justice confirmed that Astacio hasn't shown up for work since August 31.

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A letter was sent to Astacio on Friday, February 23, ordering her to report for work on Monday. Astacio subsequently reported to work that Tuesday, but hasn't shown up for work since that day.

She was elected to her seat in 2016. Her term expires in 2024.

An agreement issued by the Commission on Legislative, Judicial and Executive Compensation Board is responsible for the pay increase. It is the final of four installments agreed upon for all judges working in New York.

The New York State Judicial Conduct Commission has remained largely silent on whether it will or will not take up the case of Astacio's position of the bench.

Police report a person believed to be Judge Astacio tried to buy a shotgun at Dick's Sporting Goods

On Wednesday, Monroe County Sheriff's deputies say they conducted an investigation after receiving a third party report about a person thought to be Rochester City Court Judge Leticia Astacio trying to purchase a shotgun.

Deputies say they were called to Dick's Sporting Goods in Henrietta Monday after receiving the report. They say store employees decided not to sell the gun to Astacio based on the store's policies..

"Her potential exposure is both on a state level and a federal level," said Defense Attorney Vince Merrante said.

Merrante says the allegations could mean trouble for Astacio if her probation terms don't allow her to purchase a firearm. He also told 13WHAM that everyone must fill out a form before buying a legal gun.

"If there are any misrepresentations on that form, she could be prosecuted on a federal level," Merrante added.

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Deputies say they investigated the matter and relayed their findings to the Monroe County Probation Office. We're told the matter will go before a sentencing Judge at an undisclosed time.

"I have taken appropriate steps in my purview to address potential safety concerns, and if there are any alleged violations that make their way to the court system, they will be addressed in the normal course," said Astacio's boss, Administrative Judge Craig Doran in a statement.

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