ILNews

Brizzi hit with another legal malpractice suit

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

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.

 

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in Indiana Lawyer editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Indiana State Bar Association

Indianapolis Bar Association

Evansville Bar Association

Allen County Bar Association

Indiana Lawyer on Facebook

facebook
ADVERTISEMENT
Subscribe to Indiana Lawyer
  1. Linda, I sure hope you are not seeking a law license, for such eighteenth century sentiments could result in your denial in some jurisdictions minting attorneys for our tolerant and inclusive profession.

  2. Mazel Tov to the newlyweds. And to those bakers, photographers, printers, clerks, judges and others who will lose careers and social standing for not saluting the New World (Dis)Order, we can all direct our Two Minutes of Hate as Big Brother asks of us. Progress! Onward!

  3. My daughter was taken from my home at the end of June/2014. I said I would sign the safety plan but my husband would not. My husband said he would leave the house so my daughter could stay with me but the case worker said no her mind is made up she is taking my daughter. My daughter went to a friends and then the friend filed a restraining order which she was told by dcs if she did not then they would take my daughter away from her. The restraining order was not in effect until we were to go to court. Eventually it was dropped but for 2 months DCS refused to allow me to have any contact and was using the restraining order as the reason but it was not in effect. This was Dcs violating my rights. Please help me I don't have the money for an attorney. Can anyone take this case Pro Bono?

  4. If justice is not found in a court room, it's time to clean house!!! Even judges are accountable to a higher Judge!!!

  5. The small claims system, based on my recent and current usage of it, is not exactly a shining example of justice prevailing. The system appears slow and clunky and people involved seem uninterested in actually serving justice within a reasonable time frame. Any improvement in accountability and performance would gain a vote from me. Speaking of voting, what do the people know about judges and justice from the bench perspective. I think they have a tendency to "vote" for judges based on party affiliation or name coolness factor (like Stoner, for example!). I don't know what to do in my current situation other than grin and bear it, but my case is an example of things working neither smoothly, effectively nor expeditiously. After this experience I'd pay more to have the higher courts hear the case -- if I had the money. Oh the conundrum.

ADVERTISEMENT