Panel orders Kentucky judge to be removed from bench

Posted at 6:51 AM, September 1, 2020 and last updated 10:03 PM, May 31, 2023

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky judicial panel ordered that a judge accused of favoritism, dishonesty and other misconduct be removed from the bench, according to court documents released Monday.

The Kentucky Judicial Conduct Commission said it found Kenton County Family Court Judge Dawn Gentry, who was suspended from the bench in January, guilty on 10 of 12 charges against her. The ruling follows a weeklong misconduct hearing in August.

Gentry has 10 days to appeal the decision, the ruling said.

While none of the charges against Gentry involved criticism of her rulings, the panel said that it didn’t lessen the seriousness of her numerous instances of misconduct.

Some of the charges she was convicted on included having an inappropriate relationship with someone she hired, coercing people to work on her judicial campaign, falsifying timesheets and failing to be honest with the commission.

“This case does not involve one or two isolated occurrences, but instead involves a pattern of misconduct and repeated exercise of extremely poor judgment — on and off the Bench — by the Respondent that continued for over a year,” the commission wrote in its decision.

Gentry, 39, became a judge in 2016 when former Gov. Matt Bevin chose her to fill a vacancy. She was elected in 2018 to a four-year term.