BREAKING NEWS Anderson Police arrest convicted arsonist for new incident Full Story
STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Kentucky judge suspended after alleged affair and nepotism

A Kentucky judge was suspended with pay pending an investigation into accusations of misconduct including, among others, nepotism, retaliation against local...

Posted: Jan 8, 2020 6:51 AM

A Kentucky judge was suspended with pay pending an investigation into accusations of misconduct including, among others, nepotism, retaliation against local government employees, and having an affair with a man and a woman in a courthouse office, court documents show.

Family Circuit Court Judge Dawn Gentry was suspended Monday after she was charged with nine counts of misconduct in November 2019. Her first hearing to address the charges came last Friday before the Kentucky Judicial Conduct Commission.

In addition to alleged affairs, the JCC has accused Gentry of retaliating against local government employees who didn't provide full support for her election campaign. It further alleges Gentry engaged in nepotism, appointing friends to a specific panel after also coercing then-incumbent members of that same panel to donate to her campaign the maximum amount of money allowed.

Gentry's lawyer, Stephen Ryan, told CNN that Gentry was disappointed with the decision to suspend her temporarily on the basis that her suspension was "in the best interest of justice," as the JCC decided.

"We put up a case that she's a very good judge," Ryan said. "They just thought she was getting too much bad publicity."

In her response to the charges as part of the Friday hearing, Gentry rebuffed the accusations. She said she did not ask anyone for monetary donations, denied all charges of retaliation and any sexual advances toward anyone, and maintained that everyone she appointed to a GAL -- guardian ad litem -- panel had proper training beforehand, the documents read.

A guardian ad litem is an appointed person -- usually an attorney -- for a child who is responsible for pursuing the best interests of the child.

Bryan Beauman, whom the JCC hired to serve as a prosecutor in the hearing, said he didn't have any further comment beyond what he said at the hearing on Friday.

The other charges Gentry faces include filing inaccurate timesheets for her employees, holding unofficial conferences outside of trials that excluded some relevant parties, failing to provide enough information in a prior investigation, and making unwanted sexual advances toward another female attorney, Katherine Schulz. Gentry denies all of those accusations as well.

The official filing says that any one of the charges would be sufficient to warrant consequences, but that the nine together "demonstrate a pattern of misconduct in office."

Ryan, who formerly served as a judge and a JCC member, said he expects a month or two will pass before Gentry's next hearing, which would determine the level of punishment issued against Gentry, if any.

If found guilty, Gentry faces anything from a formal admonishment to removal from office, Ryan said.

Gentry, a Republican, was elected in 2018 to an eight-year term.

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3563578

Reported Deaths: 51953
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles119089421328
Riverside2894503767
San Bernardino2862912816
Orange2610223904
San Diego2596413271
Santa Clara1104221777
Kern102627826
Fresno952021443
Sacramento931801472
Alameda804961241
Ventura77534844
San Joaquin665691101
Contra Costa62164674
Stanislaus56024946
Tulare47784758
Monterey42138328
San Mateo38922515
San Francisco34213410
Santa Barbara31763409
Solano30024164
Merced28915397
Sonoma28063298
Imperial26888591
Kings21951218
Placer19763232
San Luis Obispo19612227
Madera15436209
Santa Cruz14588183
Marin13136197
Yolo12816185
Shasta10972174
Butte10941160
El Dorado9095100
Napa901469
Sutter884597
San Benito575959
Yuba573336
Lassen560119
Tehama508152
Nevada395274
Tuolumne394659
Mendocino379643
Amador345741
Humboldt318033
Lake315341
Glenn222023
Colusa212813
Calaveras190547
Siskiyou174014
Inyo128737
Mono12114
Del Norte9875
Plumas6536
Modoc4524
Mariposa3957
Trinity3675
Sierra990
Alpine810
Unassigned00
Chico
Partly Cloudy
63° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 36°
Feels Like: 63°
Oroville
Clear
59° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 59°
Chico
Partly Cloudy
63° wxIcon
Hi: 61° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 63°
Red Bluff
Clear
65° wxIcon
Hi: 46° Lo: 16°
Feels Like: 65°
Red Bluff
Clear
65° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 65°
Chico
Clear
63° wxIcon
Hi: 72° Lo: 44°
Feels Like: 63°
After a windy Saturday and fairly breezy Sunday, the wind we've had is weakening as the month of February comes to a close. We can expect a mostly clear first morning of March, followed by more clouds and mild air by the afternoon.
KHSL Severe
KHSL Radar
KHSL Temperatures

Community Events