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Gableman tries to drop an ethics complaint against him Wednesday

A three-judge panel will hold a hearing in Waukesha on Wednesday, as State Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman tries to drop an ethics complaint against him.

The state's Judicial Commission filed the complaint last fall. It said Gableman broke the judicial code of ethics with a misleading campaign TV ad a year and a half ago.

The three-judge panel won't be able to drop the complaint Wednesday, but it can recommend that the Supreme Court do so. It could also suggest that Gableman be punished for the ad.

Gableman defeated incumbent Justice Louis Butler. The ad accused Butler of finding a loophole when he was a public defender and a child sex offender was freed only to re-offend again.

But the ad didn't say the Supreme Court returned the man to prison and the later crime only happened after the criminal was paroled.

Gableman said the ad was true because it did not specifically say that Butler's actions caused the release.

Gableman could become only second sitting Supreme Court Justice ever to be punished by his colleagues.

Annette Ziegler was the first a year ago. She was reprimanded for hearing cases as a circuit judge involving a bank in which her husband was a board member.