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Discipline Charges Filed Against Senior Judge
Updated July 18, 2016 6:56 AM
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(INDIANAPOLIS) - The Judicial Qualifications Commission (JQC) has filed disciplinary charges against Court of Appeals Senior Judge William I. Garrard.

JQC alleges 2 counts of judicial misconduct related to an Operating While Intoxicated conviction. Judge Garrard has 20 days to file an answer to the charges.

The 6-page "Notice of the Institution of Formal Proceedings and Statement of Charges" is public record and has been filed with the Appellate Clerk's Office. The charges are brought by the 7-member Commission which investigates alleged ethical misconduct by judges. They are separate and distinct charges from any criminal or civil proceedings in the trial court system.

Generally, the disciplinary charges assert Judge Garrard violated judicial canons which require judges to respect the law, avoid impropriety, and promote confidence in the judiciary. In June 2016 Judge Garrard pled guilty in case 55D01-1511-CM-1619 to Operating a Vehicle While Intoxicated Endangering a Person, a Class A misdemeanor. The conviction stems from a Morgan County car crash. Law enforcement reported Judge Garrard stated he would lose his job, and he asked that the drunk driving be forgotten and he be taken home.

The Supreme Court has final authority to determine what, if any, judicial misconduct occurred. The Court can dismiss the charges, accept or reject a disciplinary agreement between JQC and Judge Garrard, appoint a panel of judges to conduct a public hearing, impose a fine, or impose sanctions ranging from a reprimand to a suspension to a permanent ban on holding judicial office in Indiana. More information about JQC can be found at courts.in.gov/jud-qual.



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