- Associated Press - Thursday, August 13, 2015

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - The Mississippi Supreme Court stood by its decision to remove Lee County Justice Court Judge Rickey Thompson from office for misconduct Thursday.

The Supreme Court on May 21 ordered Thompson removed from the bench, but he was allowed to remain a judge and a candidate for re-election while he appealed that ruling.

Justices said Aug. 6 that they would not reconsider and let Thompson remain on the job. He asked them to rethink that ruling, and they said Thursday that they would not.

Thompson won a five-person Democratic primary Aug. 4, but the Lee County Democratic executive committee will meet Aug. 22 and choose a nominee to replace him on the November ballot. Republicans will also be able to choose a nominee for justice court judge.

The Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance found that between June 2012 and October 2013 Thompson lent the prestige of his office to advance the private interests of others, denied a defendant her right to the counsel of her choosing and kept several participants in the drug court program past the two-year limit allowed by state law as well as jailing participants for unspecified violations or failure to comply with drug court.

On Sept. 17, 2014, the commission recommended Thompson be removed from office.

The Supreme Court said it considered Thompson’s prior history with the commission before making the decision to remove him from the bench.

Thompson was publicly reprimanded in 2008 and 2012. He also was suspended for a month in the 2012 case.

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