Judge Casey Moreland opened up for the first time Wednesday with News 2 after stepping aside from two roles and being placed under investigation for ethical conduct.
It comes after allegations surfaced he gave special treatment to a woman who went through his court.
“I think a lot of the allegations have been sensationalized. This has really… this has been a tragedy,” Moreland said.
The judge told News 2 he had a romantic relationship with this woman, and it’s something he regrets.
“The infidelity was wrong,” Moreland stated.
“You know I met her long after I had helped her in any shape form or fashion. Her cases were over before I ever met her,” he continued.
Moreland also said he has asked his wife for forgiveness.
“I’ll work for her mercy, ’cause I know I probably don’t deserve the forgiveness,” he added.
The judge’s ethical conduct is also being investigated by the Board of Judicial Conduct, and he’s stepped down from his presiding role in the General Sessions court.
Moreland says, though, he wants to complete his term.
“I hope to get back just as soon as I can, but I want to be clean and sober and clear-minded and have my depression in order, and just have everything going in the right direction,” he explained, adding, “I’ve got to help Casey before I can help the other folks in court.”
Moreland founded the Davidson County Drug Court treatment program he stepped aside from Tuesday.
He says the decision was made because he’s currently dealing with his own substance abuse problems.
“Making an announcement of that nature is very personal, but I’ve came to realize that I’m an alcoholic, and I’ve drank too much on many occasions. It’s a battle that I’ll have the rest of my life,” Moreland told News 2.
It got to where I was driving to work in the mornings, I’d pass the bars on the way and I’d pick out which one I was going to stop at on the way home,” he explained.
“The alcoholism, it’s a fight, but I’m a fighter. I think I’ll, I’ll get through this,” Moreland added.
The judge insists he never once sat on the bench drunk or even hungover.