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Conour drops attorneys, gets $15k from shrinking trust

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Ex-attorney William Conour and his defense lawyers officially parted ways on Thursday. A federal judge afterward granted Conour’s request that he receive $15,000 from a $100,000 trust fund set up for compensating client victims he is accused of defrauding.

The ruling came after testimony that the trust fund established from Conour’s assets after he was charged in April with a single count of wire fraud had been depleted by almost half since its establishment.

U.S. District Chief Judge Richard L. Young approved Conour’s pro se request for money from the trust. Conour said he needs $15,000 every two months to pay bills and hire a defense attorney. “I’m just trying to support my family, your honor,” Conour said.

The government alleges Conour stole $4.5 million from clients’ personal injury settlement trust funds in a Ponzi scheme.

The disbursement from the trust came near the close of a brief hearing in which Conour’s attorney, Richard Kammen, told Young he and Dorie Maryan sought to withdraw as Conour’s attorney. “The relationship between he and I is irreparably broken,” Kammen said. “I think it’s appropriate that I withdraw.”

Conour told the judge, “I don’t object to it, and I consent to it.”

Kammen and Maryan began representing Conour in May after his initial defender, Jim Voyles, withdrew. Early on, the $100,000 trust was established with the court and was to collect and disburse assets to compensate victims and pay other claims as approved by the court.

Kammen told the court that since he began representing Conour, the fund’s balance had shrunk to $54,000 from various disbursements.

Conour said he was surprised by how low the balance was and that he had not received an accounting of the trust.

Young asked Conour about his remaining assets. He said he had some artwork for sale with a dealer in Carmel and was trying to sell a home appraised at $2.5 million, but which has a lien of more than $1 million.

He said he also was owed legal fees of nearly $2 million, but collecting would be a problem, especially since Conour resigned from the bar in July. “We might be able to get half that,” he said.

Marcia Anderson fumed during the proceeding. Injured in a car crash, she reached settlements through Conour’s representation of $175,000, but said she had received only $10,000 in the form of a loan.

“I have not seen any of it since,” Anderson said after the hearing. “I will probably never see a penny of it, either.” She said she will keep coming to court until she sees Conour led away in handcuffs.

Young set a progress hearing for Oct. 17, at which time he said Conour’s scheduled trial date of Oct. 22 likely would be reset.

Conour asked Young whether he should file another motion to request funds from the trust if he can’t secure counsel before the Oct. 17 hearing. Young told him that would be appropriate.

 

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  • Confused
    I'm confused. Conour steals $4.5M from his disabled clients so the court sets up a $100K trust fund to help compensate Conour's victims. Meanwhile, the "justice system" lets Conour take more money from those clients by using that same trust fund so Conour can maintain his lifestyle. Where is he living? What kind of car does he drive? He already paid and fired 2 sets of high-buck attorneys (an obvious ploy to stall the case) so why isn't he told to use a public defender? Then Judge Young tells Conour that he can file yet another motion to request funds from his victims' trust fund to secure another high-buck attorney? I may be uneducated about the law, but it seems to me that Conour should be told to keep his greedy hands off that trust fund and be forced to use a public defender.

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  1. Yes diversity is so very important. With justice Rucker off ... the court is too white. Still too male. No Hispanic justice. No LGBT justice. And there are other checkboxes missing as well. This will not do. I say hold the seat until a physically handicapped Black Lesbian of Hispanic heritage and eastern religious creed with bipolar issues can be located. Perhaps an international search, with a preference for third world candidates, is indicated. A non English speaker would surely increase our diversity quotient!!!

  2. First, I want to thank Justice Rucker for his many years of public service, not just at the appellate court level for over 25 years, but also when he served the people of Lake County as a Deputy Prosecutor, City Attorney for Gary, IN, and in private practice in a smaller, highly diverse community with a history of serious economic challenges, ethnic tensions, and recently publicized but apparently long-standing environmental health risks to some of its poorest residents. Congratulations for having the dedication & courage to practice law in areas many in our state might have considered too dangerous or too poor at different points in time. It was also courageous to step into a prominent and highly visible position of public service & respect in the early 1990's, remaining in a position that left you open to state-wide public scrutiny (without any glitches) for over 25 years. Yes, Hoosiers of all backgrounds can take pride in your many years of public service. But people of color who watched your ascent to the highest levels of state government no doubt felt even more as you transcended some real & perhaps some perceived social, economic, academic and professional barriers. You were living proof that, with hard work, dedication & a spirit of public service, a person who shared their same skin tone or came from the same county they grew up in could achieve great success. At the same time, perhaps unknowingly, you helped fellow members of the judiciary, court staff, litigants and the public better understand that differences that are only skin-deep neither define nor limit a person's character, abilities or prospects in life. You also helped others appreciate that people of different races & backgrounds can live and work together peacefully & productively for the greater good of all. Those are truths that didn't have to be written down in court opinions. Anyone paying attention could see that truth lived out every day you devoted to public service. I believe you have been a "trailblazer" in Indiana's legal community and its judiciary. I also embrace your belief that society's needs can be better served when people in positions of governmental power reflect the many complexions of the population that they serve. Whether through greater understanding across the existing racial spectrum or through the removal of some real and some perceived color-based, hope-crushing barriers to life opportunities & success, movement toward a more reflective representation of the population being governed will lead to greater and uninterrupted respect for laws designed to protect all peoples' rights to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness. Thanks again for a job well-done & for the inevitable positive impact your service has had - and will continue to have - on countless Hoosiers of all backgrounds & colors.

  3. Diversity is important, but with some limitations. For instance, diversity of experience is a great thing that can be very helpful in certain jobs or roles. Diversity of skin color is never important, ever, under any circumstance. To think that skin color changes one single thing about a person is patently racist and offensive. Likewise, diversity of values is useless. Some values are better than others. In the case of a supreme court justice, I actually think diversity is unimportant. The justices are not to impose their own beliefs on rulings, but need to apply the law to the facts in an objective manner.

  4. Have been seeing this wonderful physician for a few years and was one of his patients who told him about what we were being told at CVS. Multiple ones. This was a witch hunt and they shold be ashamed of how patients were treated. Most of all, CVS should be ashamed for what they put this physician through. So thankful he fought back. His office is no "pill mill'. He does drug testing multiple times a year and sees patients a minimum of four times a year.

  5. Brian W, I fear I have not been sufficiently entertaining to bring you back. Here is a real laugh track that just might do it. When one is grabbed by the scruff of his worldview and made to choose between his Confession and his profession ... it is a not a hard choice, given the Confession affects eternity. But then comes the hardship in this world. Imagine how often I hear taunts like yours ... "what, you could not even pass character and fitness after they let you sit and pass their bar exam ... dude, there must really be something wrong with you!" Even one of the Bishop's foremost courtiers said that, when explaining why the RCC refused to stand with me. You want entertaining? How about watching your personal economy crash while you have a wife and five kids to clothe and feed. And you can't because you cannot work, because those demanding you cast off your Confession to be allowed into "their" profession have all the control. And you know that they are wrong, dead wrong, and that even the professional code itself allows your Faithful stand, to wit: "A lawyer may refuse to comply with an obligation imposed by law upon a good faith belief that no valid obligation exists. The provisions of Rule 1.2(d) concerning a good faith challenge to the validity, scope, meaning or application of the law apply to challenges of legal regulation of the practice of law." YET YOU ARE A NONPERSON before the BLE, and will not be heard on your rights or their duties to the law -- you are under tyranny, not law. And so they win in this world, you lose, and you lose even your belief in the rule of law, and demoralization joins poverty, and very troubling thoughts impeaching self worth rush in to fill the void where your career once lived. Thoughts you did not think possible. You find yourself a failure ... in your profession, in your support of your family, in the mirror. And there is little to keep hope alive, because tyranny rules so firmly and none, not the church, not the NGO's, none truly give a damn. Not even a new court, who pay such lip service to justice and ancient role models. You want entertainment? Well if you are on the side of the courtiers running the system that has crushed me, as I suspect you are, then Orwell must be a real riot: "There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed. But always — do not forget this, Winston — always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always, at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless. If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — forever." I never thought they would win, I always thought that at the end of the day the rule of law would prevail. Yes, the rule of man's law. Instead power prevailed, so many rules broken by the system to break me. It took years, but, finally, the end that Dr Bowman predicted is upon me, the end that she advised the BLE to take to break me. Ironically, that is the one thing in her far left of center report that the BLE (after stamping, in red ink, on Jan 22) is uninterested in, as that the BLE and ADA office that used the federal statute as a sword now refuses to even dialogue on her dire prediction as to my fate. "C'est la vie" Entertaining enough for you, status quo defender?

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