Tracie Hunter to remain free

Tracie Hunter appears in court

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - After showing up more than an hour late, Tracie Hunter walked away from her sentencing hearing a free woman Friday.

Hamilton County Judge Patrick Dinkelacker decided to not defy a federal judge's order to delay Hunter's six-month jail sentence. Dinkelacker said he believed that judge was overstepping his bounds in the decision.

The judge granted the order a day before Judge Tracie Hunter was scheduled to begin her sentence after the Ohio Supreme Court ruled not to hear her appeal.

Hunter's lawyers told the federal court that she didn't receive a fair trial in 2014. They allege prosecutorial misconduct and mistakes by the Hamilton County trial judge. Hunter's lawyers also say a jail sentence would aggravate Hunter's health problems that stem partly from a car accident when she was a college student.

Her sentence will be delayed as she further appeals her conviction for unlawful interest in a public contract. Dinkelacker said Hunter's case will return to a Hamilton County court in two months.

Dinkelacker threatened to send Hunter to jail if she arrived late for any future court appearances.

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