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(AP) A panel says ethics charges will proceed against a Kentucky judge who declared his conscientious objection to handling adoption cases involving gay and lesbian adults, despite his resignation last week.

News outlets report the state Judicial Conduct Commission announced Monday that a hearing for Judge W. Mitchell Nance is scheduled for Dec. 15, a day before his resignation takes effect. The 66-year-old Nance has presided over family court cases in Barren and Metcalfe counties in rural south-central Kentucky.

The commission said Nance's April order, which he said was motivated by religious convictions, violated several ethics provisions. That included a rule barring judges from showing bias based on sexual orientation. Several civil rights groups had filed a complaint against Nance.

Nance's attorneys argued for charges to be dismissed after he resigned.