Sumter County judge arrested for DUI

Photo by Laura Williams

Photo by Laura Williams

AMERICUS, Ga. -- A judge in Sumter County is in trouble with the law.

Southwestern Judicial Circuit Chief Superior Court Judge Rucker Smith of Americus was arrested Saturday after police charged he was driving under the influence of alcohol.

Smith, 57, was pulled over by law enforcement in Leslie for speeding. The police officer charged Smith with having open container of alcohol and driving under the influence.

A representative of the Sumter County Sheriff's Office confirmed to The Albany Herald that Smith had posted bond the same day as his arrest. He has since returned to work.

An official with the Leslie Police Department could not be reached for comment on the case Tuesday afternoon.

Smith has had previous run-ins with the law. He was charged with battery stemming from a July 31, 2005, incident in which he was accused of pushing and grabbing Rachel Oliver by the neck while the two were in his home.

In that case, a Sumter County jury took 90 minutes to determine the judge was not guilty. In the interim, the Judicial Qualifications Commission sought to suspend his credentials.