Humboldt Judge resigns after allegations of misconduct

By Alex Benzegala,
Des Moines, IA – District judge Kurt Stoebe of Humboldt resigned his position on Friday as Assistant Chief Judge of Iowa’s 2B Judicial District after he allegedly acted inappropriately.

Governor Kim Reynolds, for only the second time in the Iowa history, rejected two nominees for an open judgeship, stating that a Stoebe, who chaired the nominating commission, tainted the process by favoring one candidate and opposing others.

Governor Reynolds noted that law requires an appointment from the nominees list within 30 days, but that the Commission’s Chairman, Stoebe made disparaging comments on October 12th when the commission met to interview candidates for a district judgeship vacancy.
After the interviews, Stoebe’s Commission recommended Humboldt County Attorney Jonathon Beaty and District Associate Judge Derek Johnson. Governor Reynolds rejected both finalists, and ordered a restart to the nominating process.
Reynolds stated that other members of the Commission reached out to her office on October 12, expressing concerns over Judge Stoebe’s conduct. The Commissioners stated that Stoebe gave one of the finalists extra interview time, as well as coaching on how to answer questions. The complaint also alleged that Stoebe referred to one of the other applicants as clueless, and attacked another applicant’s business and personal dealings.
The most startling accusation was the Stoebe had made such “significantly misleading comments”, causing one applicant to be unfairly excluded from consideration.
Stoebe was not available for comment on this story.