Kentucky judge accused of misconduct gets 3 more charges

Posted at 7:01 AM, August 20, 2020 and last updated 10:02 PM, May 31, 2023

UPDATED 8/19/20



COVINGTON, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky judge accused of favoritism, making sexual advances toward an employee and other misconduct has been charged with three additional ethics violations, according to court documents released Monday.

Kenton County Family Court Judge Dawn Gentry was charged with failure to be candid and honest with the Judicial Conduct Commission, retaliation against an individual who cooperated with the commission’s investigation and failure to disclose a personal relationship on the record, according to court documents filed by the commission on Friday and made public Monday.

That brings the charges against the Republican judge to twelve. Gentry was accused in December of making inappropriate sexual advances, trading jobs for campaign donations, using a legal panel for campaign work, retaliating against employees and attorneys, keeping false time sheets, and guitars to be played in the office and her employees to consume alcohol, news outlets reported.

At the time, Gentry denied the allegations but did acknowledge appointing acquaintances to a permanent custody roster, saying “almost all attorneys who practice in this county” are her acquaintances.

The three new charges allege she “failed to be honest” with the commission during a January hearing, including about her alleged relationship with the employee and whether her staff shredded documents from her office; that she filed a complaint with the Kentucky Bar Association against a lawyer who cooperated in the commission’s investigation; and that she presided over cases in which a friend of hers was one of the attorneys, but did not disclose the relationship to other lawyers, news outlets said, citing the court documents.

Gentry’s attorney disputed the new charges, The Lexington Herald-Leader reported.

The judge has been suspended with pay since January. Her misconduct hearing was set for August 10.