Jessie Leblanc Bio – Jessie Leblanc Wiki
Jessie Leblanc is a Two-Term District Judge. She is a judge on the 23rd Judicial District Court in Louisiana. She was elected to the position on March 24, 2012. She was re-elected in 2014 for a term beginning on January 1, 2015, and expiring on December 31, 2020.
She resigned after facing a chorus of calls to step down following the exposure of racist text messages she sent to her ex-lover. She admitted to sending text messages with racial slurs in an exclusive interview with WAFB’s Scottie Hunter.
Today, I'm calling on 23rd Judicial Judge Jessie LeBlanc to resign. The admitted and repeated use of racial slurs by a judge who has taken an oath to administer justice fairly and impartially is wrong, period. #lagov #lalege
— John Bel Edwards (@LouisianaGov) February 26, 2020
Education & Career
LeBlanc earned an undergraduate degree from Louisiana State University in 1991, also graduating from the paralegal program in 1993. She continued her education at LSU Law School, from which she earned her J.D. in 1996.
2012-2014: Judge, 23rd Judicial District
2003-2012: Hearing officer and judicial administrator, 23rd Judicial District
1998-2003: Assistant district attorney, 23rd Judicial District
1996-1998: Public defender
After earning her J.D., LeBlanc operated a private law practice.
Jessie Leblanc Resignation
Jessie’s resignation letter called out a number of people including an unnamed member of Governor John Bel Edwards’ staff, District Attorney Ricky Babin, Sheriff Leland Falcon, Judge Alvin Turner and others.
LeBlanc, a two-term Republican who faces reelection in the fall, has said she doesn’t plan to resign and stepping down her judgeship would forfeit a lucrative salary with benefits. The state Republican Party did not return calls seeking comment Wednesday.
While her precise gross salary in 2019 wasn’t immediately available, the Legislature set state district judges’ annual salary at $153,485 starting July 1, 2019, up from nearly $152,000. Like other judges in her district, she has received a car allowance and reimbursement for conference travel, dues, fees and meals. In 2018, she took home $17,522 on top of her salary, the most of any of the five judges in the district, the court’s 2018 annual audit says.
Jessie Leblanc Statement
“I admit that I used that word,” 23rd Judicial District Judge Jessie LeBlanc said Sunday. “I profusely apologize for that. I should have never said it. It was uncalled for. I was angry. I was upset. But, it’s no excuse.”
Asked if she had ever used the slur before, the judge seemed to stumble over her own words.
“Not in a – no – not – no – not in a – no – I have not used that racial slur in the past,” the judge replied. “This was in a moment of a heated exchange that was private between Bruce and one I that I never dreamed would have come out to the public.”
LeBlanc previously admitted that she had an affair with a Bruce Prejean – the former chief deputy in Assumption Parish. Both were married to other people at the time of their affair.
“It is something I’m not proud of,” LeBlanc said of the eight-year affair. “I’ve had to apologize to my husband, I will continue to have to apologize to my husband, my children and my God for the rest of my life.”
Assumption Parish Sheriff Leland Falcon demoted Prejean from his position at Chief Deputy after Prejean admitted to the affair last year.
In a rare move, District Attorney Ricky Babin and the district’s lead public defender earlier this year filed a motion asking that LeBlanc voluntarily remove herself from criminal matters in Assumption parish or be forced to so because of the affair.
LeBlanc says she does not believe the affair is something that would warrant any new trials.