2 judges back on bench following fight-related suspensions

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Two southern Indiana judges are back on the bench after completing their suspensions for a downtown Indianapolis fight and double-shooting that followed a night of bar hopping.

Clark Circuit Judge Brad Jacobs and Crawford Circuit Judge Sabrina Bell were reinstated to the bench Monday following 30-day suspensions that took effect Nov. 22.


A third judge, Clark Circuit Judge Andrew Adams, will be reinstated Jan. 13 after completing a 60-day suspension.

Adams and Jacobs were shot and seriously wounded during a May 1 fight while they were in Indianapolis for a judicial conference. Court records show that the altercation began after one of two men in a SUV yelled something at the judges and Bell extended a middle finger at the pair.

The fight and shooting led to charges against Adams and two other men. Adams later pleaded to a misdemeanor for battery.  He was not sentenced to any jail time, but rather received one year of probation.

The three judges were suspended as part of disciplinary action taken by the Indiana Supreme Court in response to the judicial misconduct they were found to have committed.

The court’s order said the three judges were intoxicated “and behaving in an injudicious manner” when a night of bar hopping led to the fight and Adams and Jacobs’ shootings.

Adams has not returned to the bench since the May 1 incident. After hospitalization and recovery, Jacobs returned to his duties in July before his November suspension began.


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