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Durham DA offers defense for feud with NC judge

DURHAM, NC (AP) – Lawyers for Durham County’s embattled top prosecutor present their case at a rare judicial hearing to decide whether she should be permanently removed from office.

Durham District Attorney Tracey Cline’s attorney is expected to present evidence Friday.

Cline was suspended last month based on accusations of misconduct she levied against Superior Court Judge Orlando Hudson.

If visiting Judge Robert Hobgood finds Cline brought her office into disrepute and undermined public confidence in the justice system, he could permanently remove her. Hobgood could rule Friday or make his decision later.

Such a special inquiry has been held only once before in North Carolina. That was nearly 20 years ago, after a New Hanover County DA was accused of using an ethnic slur.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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