Daviess County Circuit Court Judge, Div. II, Joe Castlen worked his last “official” day on the bench last Monday, on the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday. However, until a replacement is elected or appointed, Judge Castlen will remain on the bench. Castlen anticipates it taking another three to four months before he has his “real” last day. Nevertheless, family and friends gathered in the courtroom Friday to honor the judge and his many years of dedicated service with a special reception.
As far as who will take the bench in his place, Castlen said there are a few scenarios that could take effect.
“Lisa Jones and David Payne are both going to run for the office,” Castlen said. “That makes an interesting situation because the governor can appoint somebody.”
Lisa Jones, Daviess County district court judge, Div. I, said she was unsure at this point what decision would be made.
“As of the last time I checked, I don’t think we know what Frankfort is going to do — have an appointment or a special election,” Jones said. “They will send out a notice of vacancy to all eligible attorneys. Even if there is an appointment, it will be followed by a special election, more than likely, since there are four years left on his [Castlen’s] term.”
Jones was confident that, regardless of the manner in which the selection was made, she wanted to be part of the process.
“Whether it is a special election or an appointment — I intend to pursue that,” Jones said. “I’m really hoping to get a mental health court in Daviess County. I hope by pursuing the circuit judgeship that it can give me more authority to help make that happen.”
The Owensboro Times attempted to reach Daviess County District Judge, Div. II, David Payne. Judge Payne was in traffic court and unable to respond at the time.