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Judge Casey Moreland Breaks Silence About Controversy

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Posted at 6:10 PM, Jul 23, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-07 08:56:03-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A powerful judge has been under fire and was even attacked by Metro's police chief.

It was a big story when Judge Casey Moreland was accused of mishandling the David Chase domestic assault case last year, but NewsChannel 5 has learned those charges were bogus - the alleged victim lied.

With the dark cloud lifted, Judge Moreland has finally been speaking out.

"I love coming to work every single day, but I have to be honest, some days I dreaded coming to work," said Moreland in an exclusive interview.

Imagine a reputation tarnished in a instant. City leaders attacking your integrity, calling for your resignation. In 2014, Judge Moreland lived it.

"My life got kind of hectic there for a while," said Moreland.

All this after the judge arranged the release of David Chase - a domestic assault suspect - before the 12-hour cooling off period.

Moreland had reason to doubt the claims made by the alleged victim.

"The story that I heard just didn't match up," said Moreland.

So Chase went free, and the woman claimed he went and beat her again. The reaction was outrage.

Metro police chief Steve Anderson called Moreland's involvment a fiasco and questioned his concern on matters of domestic violence.

"I honestly feel when I made that decision that I was doing the right thing," said Moreland.

It took a while, but then finally in July - vindication. Prosecutors dropped all charges against Chase. He didn't do it. The woman lied.

"The information I was given was correct," said Moreland.

The judge conceded if he ever faced a similar situation he'd include the district attorney in the decision. For his part, Moreland hasn't asked for or expected any apologies.

"I've already moved on," he said.

Moreland has been focusing on his job including work on his acclaimed drug court that has helped addicts seeking treatment, and he has wanted people to know that despite what critics have still been saying about his actions in the Chase case, he's serious about domestic violence.

"I would never intentionally hurt someone like that, especially a woman," said Moreland.

He was re-elected last year and has been set to remain on the bench for the next seven years.

Judge Moreland was reprimanded by the Tennessee Board of Judicial Conduct last year for the way he handled the Chase case.

The board found his actions did not promote confidence in the judiciary and abused the prestige of his office.