Willard Proctor Jr.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (Legal Newsline)-An embattled Arkansas state judge was recommended Friday for removal from the bench by the state's Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission.

The commission said the non-profit probation organization Pulaski County Judge Willard Proctor Jr. created, Cycle Breakers, benefited financially from his actions on the bench because it was supported by fees from his court.

He was also accused in an ethics complaint of, among other things, sending one probationer, Demoreo Davis, $450 and allowing him to stay at his house.

Earlier this month, a three-member panel of the Arkansas Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission recommended that Proctor be removed from office for violating judicial ethics rules.

"Given all of that which is before the full commission, it is our belief that there is compelling proof, and there are, as well, compelling reasons for Judge Proctor to be removed from the bench for the Demoreo Davis allegations alone," the panel said in its report.

The full commission's decision Friday will be considered by the Arkansas Supreme Court, which will determine whether Proctor should be ousted.

Attorneys for the judge had unsuccessfully sought to restrict their client's docket to civil cases.

The effort collapsed after five of his 16 fellow 6th Judicial District jurists endorsed a recommendation that the state Supreme Court act ahead of a scheduled Jan. 1 case assignment change.

From Legal Newsline: Reach staff reporter Chris Rizo at chrisrizo@legalnewsline.com.

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