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Press release: Hancock Co. Judge Admonition

For Immediate Release | July 3, 2023

Public Admonition of Hancock County Judge

The Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications has issued a Public Admonition of Hancock Superior Court 1 Judge Donald Jack (“D.J.”) Davis. Davis cooperated with the investigation, acknowledges he violated the Code of Judicial Conduct, and apologizes for making statements unbecoming of a judicial officer.

The Commission admonished Davis for inappropriate public comments made in June 2022 during a police department investigation concerning his son. Judge Davis’ inappropriate comments were directed towards a person at a private residence while police were present. The behavior is a violation of Rule 1.2 of the Code of Judicial Conduct. Further details about the matter can be found in the Admonition.

The Commission notes that judges need to be cautious about appearing at emotionally charged scenes, especially if there are any challenges to their maintaining appropriate demeanor.

The seven-member Commission that investigates alleged ethical misconduct by judges determined that formal disciplinary charges are warranted. However, Supreme Court rules allow for the judicial officer and the Commission to agree to a public admonition, instead of filing charges. Davis will not be formally charged with ethical misconduct. He accepts the public admonition. Davis is represented by attorney James Bell who can be reached at More information about the Commission can be found at


Kathryn Dolan, Chief Public Information Officer