Judge in Trouble for Dismissing Her Own Traffic Tickets.

Josh_R

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Jan 29, 2005
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#1
http://www.ydr.com/crime/ci_19958839

Lancaster judge charged in dismissing her own parking tickets

By BRETT HAMBRIGHT
Lancaster Newspapers
Updated: 02/14/2012 07:29:07 AM EST


A Lancaster city district judge has been removed from the bench after she was charged Monday with a dozen criminal offenses.
The charges stem from District Judge Kelly S. Ballentine's dismissal last year of three tickets issued to her by a city police officer, according to a police affidavit.
Ballentine, who presides over part of Lancaster city, was arraigned Monday afternoon at the office of District Judge William Benner.
She was released on $25,000 unsecured bail.
After an investigation, the state attorney general filed 12 charges, including six felonies, against Ballentine.
Ballentine has been placed on leave from her duties as district judge.
"At this time, I have issued an order that she be placed on indefinite administrative leave until all criminal charges are resolved," said Lancaster County President Judge Joseph Madenspacher, who has authority over the county district judges.
Ballentine, however, will be paid, Madenspacher said.
"I have no power to suspend her," the president judge said.
Ballentine is represented by attorney Royce Leon Morris of Harrisburg.
Morris did not immediately return telephone calls seeking comment.
Ballentine is charged with six counts of tampering with public records, three counts of restricted activities due to a conflict of interest and three counts of obstruction of the administration of law.
Ballentine is accused of dismissing three tickets issued to her by police. Two were for allegedly parking illegally and another was for an alleged vehicle registration offense.
Ballentine, 43, dismissed a parking ticket and an expired-registration ticket in December 2010 and a parking ticket in January 2011, according to the affidavit.
City police Officer Thomas Gjurich placed tickets on Ballentine's BMW sedan three times in November 2010 when it was parked outside her home, according to the affidavit.
The $268.50 she owed on the three tickets was never paid, according to the affidavit.
On the citations, "it was Kelly Ballentine's handwriting dismissing them," an agent with the attorney general's office writes in the affidavit.
According to the state Judicial Conduct Board's rules, district judges should disqualify themselves in proceedings in which they are a party.
Ballentine, an attorney, was elected to the city's southeast district judge seat in 2006.
For the time being, District Judge Richard Simms will take Ballentine's place, according to Madenspacher. Ballentine was Simms' successor as magistrate in that jurisdiction.
Madenspacher said Monday that he will be contacting the state Supreme Court about the charges.
The Supreme Court can then decide if it wants to further discipline Ballentine.
There was no time frame for the Supreme Court's decision, but Madenspacher said he expects it will be expedited.
The investigation started in May 2011, according to the affidavit, when Madenspacher contacted Lancaster County District Attorney Craig Stedman about reports the judge had received regarding the tickets.
Stedman assigned county Detective Dean Miller to look into it. After finding possible criminal activity regarding the dismissal of the tickets, Stedman referred the case in September to the attorney general's office.
Upon conviction, the offenses carry a wide range of possible sentences. The felony charges each carry a guideline sentence range of probation to three months in prison. The misdemeanor counts carry a guideline sentence of probation to a month in prison.
 

Neckbeard

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Oct 26, 2011
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#5
The hard labor option was banned in the 19th century for those people.
 

whiskeyguy

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"At this time, I have issued an order that she be placed on indefinite administrative leave until all criminal charges are resolved," said Lancaster County President Judge Joseph Madenspacher, who has authority over the county district judges.

Ballentine, however, will be paid, Madenspacher said.
Of course she will.
 

Motor Head

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Jan 23, 2006
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#8
Stop! If you think this is isolated to a black judges, you are delirious. Her only mistake was not having one of the other judges do it for her. Mudda fuggin Quid Pro Quo and sheeit.