Marion Superior Court judge suspended with pay pending misconduct investigation

Judge Kimberly Brown faces 45 counts of misconduct

INDIANAPOLIS - A Marion Superior Court judge has been suspended with pay pending the results of a disciplinary investigation against her.

The Indiana Supreme Court ruled Thursday to immediately suspend Judge Kimberly Brown with pay following a motion last week by the state Commission on Judicial Qualifications.

The Commission said Brown's immediate removal from the bench "is necessary to restore the public's faith in our state's system of justice."

In August, the Commission alleged that Brown created a hostile work environment and failed to properly staff and train her court, resulting in delays of as much as 22 days in inmate releases.

Highlighting a period between January 2009 and July 2013, the Commission alleged that, “defendants suffered detrimental consequences due to the judge’s failure to rule on motions in a timely fashion.” 

She is accused of continuing bench trials for extended periods if she did not believe they could be completed by 4 p.m. and making derogatory comments about staff members.

The petition also noted that Brown has a high rate of staff turnover, and is alleged to have fired a staff member she believed complained about her.

In September, Brown admitted to issues  involving her staff and her oversight of the court but said she shouldn't be suspended because of steps taken to mitigate the problems.

Brown's attorney filed a motion Wednesday asking that the request to suspend Brown be denied.

Brown will remain suspended with pay while the Indiana Supreme Court reviews 45 counts of alleged judicial misconduct in her case. The Commission has alleged that Brown "failed to preserve the integrity of the judiciary."

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