Benton County judge reprimanded

(May 26, 2004) - (Little Rock-AP) -- The state panel that disciplines judges has issued a letter of admonishment to Benton County Circuit Judge Jay Finch. The letter criticizes Finch for rudeness and for showing a temper. The Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission found that Finch's conduct "delayed or impaired the dispensation of justice." The panel said it received anonymous complaints that Finch showed "an injudicious temperament" toward staff and lawyers and witnesses before his court. The letter of admonishment also said Finch was frequently absent from work in 2002 and the early part of 2003. In an appearance before the commission, Finch acknowledged the problems. The commission dismissed a complaint that Finch had fired his case coordinator in an act of alleged improper retaliation.