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Brizzi hit with another legal malpractice suit

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Defrocked Secretary of State Charlie White has sued Carl Brizzi, the former Marion County prosecutor who represented White during a criminal case that led to his removal from office. White's lawsuit makes a claim of legal malpractice.

White hired Brizzi in August 2011 to represent him in his criminal trial in Hamilton County, where he was convicted in Feburary 2012 of six of seven charges, including false registration, voting in another precinct and theft. The jury acquitted him of fraud on a financial institution. White subsequently was removed from office.

A 31-page complaint filed last week in Marion Superior Court claims Brizzi was ignorant of several areas of law and failed to mount a defense. The suit also claims Brizzi and his mother were experiencing health problems that delayed the trial, but he didn’t inform White.

Brizzi did not return a telephone message seeking comment.

The complaint filed by attorney Andrea L. Ciobanu mirrors many of those made in White’s petition for post-conviction relief. The complaint alleges legal malpractice, breach of contract, neglect or reckless infliction of emotional distress, constructive fraud, fraud and negligence.

According to the complaint, Brizzi pursued a jury nullification strategy and chose not to present a defense without White’s blessing.

“It does not meet the professional standard of care to wait until the night before and the day of the close of the state of Indiana’s case to become frantic and aggressive with the plaintiff in front of two other witnesses,” about not putting on evidence, the complaint alleges.

“Several of (White’s) witnesses were waiting to testify at the courthouse or a nearby vicinity, and (Brizzi) abruptly and mid-trial decided ‘not to put on a case’ even though Brizzi was paid in full to put on a trial,” the complaint asserts. “And he always led (White) to believe, up to that point, that he would put on a case.”
 
The suit seeks award of damages for those equal to White’s claim of harm to reputation, loss of employment, mental anguish, and attorney fees and costs for his post-conviction action and his disciplinary action, in which his license to practice law was suspended.

Ciobanu’s complaint also alleges, “Brizzi engaged in irrational action such as slamming doors, cursing and yelling at lay persons in the judicial center conference room, making fantastic boasts as well as using degrading language to an already exhausted (White) to wear him down.”

The malpractice claim is the second that a former central Indiana officeholder has brought against Brizzi. Former Hancock County Coroner Tamara Vangundy sued Brizzi in May, claiming his faulty legal advice cost her an opportunity to seek re-election after she pleaded guilty to a felony count of official misconduct.

 

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  1. I'm not sure what's more depressing: the fact that people would pay $35,000 per year to attend an unaccredited law school, or the fact that the same people "are hanging in there and willing to follow the dean’s lead in going forward" after the same school fails to gain accreditation, rendering their $70,000 and counting education worthless. Maybe it's a good thing these people can't sit for the bar.

  2. Such is not uncommon on law school startups. Students and faculty should tap Bruce Green, city attorney of Lufkin, Texas. He led a group of studnets and faculty and sued the ABA as a law student. He knows the ropes, has advised other law school startups. Very astute and principled attorney of unpopular clients, at least in his past, before Lufkin tapped him to run their show.

  3. Not that having the appellate records on Odyssey won't be welcome or useful, but I would rather they first bring in the stray counties that aren't yet connected on the trial court level.

  4. Aristotle said 350 bc: "The most hated sort, and with the greatest reason, is usury, which makes a gain out of money itself, and not from the natural object of it. For money was intended to be used in exchange, but not to increase at interest. And this term interest, which means the birth of money from money, is applied to the breeding of money because the offspring resembles the parent. Wherefore of an modes of getting wealth this is the most unnatural.

  5. Oh yes, lifetime tenure. The Founders gave that to the federal judges .... at that time no federal district courts existed .... so we are talking the Supreme Court justices only in context ....so that they could rule against traditional marriage and for the other pet projects of the sixties generation. Right. Hmmmm, but I must admit, there is something from that time frame that seems to recommend itself in this context ..... on yes, from a document the Founders penned in 1776: " He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good."

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