Since Alapaha Circuit Chief Judge Brooks E. Blitch Sr. resigned his judgeship in April 2008 rather than face an ethics trial in front of the state Judicial Qualifications Commission, at least 21 Georgia judges have been disciplined publicly by the JQC or have stepped down from the bench amid allegations of unethical conduct.

JQC Chairman Benjamin F. Easterlin IV calls the stream of judges who have departed under a cloud since the JQC filed public charges against Blitch — accusing him of levying unauthorized court fees, improperly ordering the expenditure of county funds, and influence-peddling — “highly unusual.”

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