Indiana Supreme Court permanently bans Muncie judge

Judge Dianna Bennington
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The Indiana Supreme Court has permanently banned a Muncie City Court judge from serving. However, Dianna Bennington will be able to retain her license to practice law.

The court on Friday approved the deal to settle 13 counts of misconduct against Bennington.

Read the court order here.

The state's Judicial Qualifications Commission filed a petition in December with the Supreme Court asking for Bennington's supsension.

Bennington faced 13 disciplinary charges filed by the commission for her alleged abuse of power, alleged repeated violations of court rules and injudicious public conduct.

The Commission charged that Bennington abused her contempt power when she ordered a man jailed without sufficient due process. In the same case, the commission alleged Bennington failed to maintain the security of the man's court file and that file is now lost.

That's one of several alleged instances where the Commission claims the judge did not comply with procedures.

Bennington's personal life has also come under scrutiny.

The judge shares twins with a man named as "JW" in the complaint, which alleges Bennington has had verbal confrontations with the father of her children - one in front of their daycare, with a Delaware County Sheriff's Department deputy there to witness it.

In accordance with Friday's order, Bennington must submit her resignation to the governor within five days. She may also be liable for the Commission's costs of two video depositions which she did not show up for, as well as the Commission's costs to attempt to communicate with her via Federal Express and certified mail.