Superior Court Chief Justice Robert M. Bonin has been suspended pending an investigation into charges of misconduct both on the bench and as assistant state attorney general before he was appointed to the bench last year.
The state Supreme Court suspended Bonin Thursday, naming Superior Court Justice John H. Meagher to replace him.
Earlier this week, Bonin refused the judges' request that he step aside until allegations against him have been resolved.
Bonin, who had requested Thursday's unprecendented hearing to explain his refusal to step down, did not speak. He was represented by attorney Paul R. Sugarman, who said "the system will not be served, but in fact suffer" from a suspension.
For the past few weeks, the Supreme Court's Committee on Judicial Responsibility has been reviewing a 100-page report looking into Bonin's financial affairs and alleged miscounduct.
The court had not asked Bonin to step aside until his appearance last week at a homosexual rights lecture held by a group supporting the cases of men awaiting Superior Court trials.
Bonin has said he attended the lecture "without any prior knowledge" that the proceeds were to be used to help the defendants.
The committee also is reviewing allegations that Bonin deceived $1,000 a month from a private firm while he was assistant attorney general and that his wife had free use of car leased by an insurance company for $200 a month.