GreeneStreets. Feature photo of a back country road in Greene County, Indiana. Courtesy of Nick Schneider.

Discipline charges filed against Knox County Judge

The Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications has filed disciplinary charges against Knox Superior Court 2 Judge Ryan D. Johanningsmeier.

The Commission alleges three counts of misconduct related to a case where the judge did not recuse even though the defendant was a good friend.

Previously, the Commission privately cautioned the judge about his involvement in the matter. Judge Johanningsmeier has 20 days to file an answer to the charges.

The 8-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.

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 the Commission and Judge Johanningsmeier, 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.