TRENTON — His lawyer says a New Jersey judge who told a woman she could "close your legs" to prevent a sexual assault is "remorseful."

Judge John Russo Jr. did not speak Tuesday during a disciplinary hearing before the state Supreme Court. But his lawyer, Amelia Carolla, told the justices Russo has "learned his lesson" and he "will not do this again."

The woman appeared before Russo in 2016 seeking a restraining order against a man she said sexually assaulted her. Russo responded with the comment about closing her legs.

Russo previously said he was seeking more information and wasn't trying to humiliate the woman.

Chief Justice Stuart Rabner questioned how a sex assault victim could have confidence in the judicial process if Russo remains on the bench.

The justices are deciding how to discipline the judge.

Russo is a former mayor of Toms River.

(Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

More From New Jersey 101.5 FM