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Disciplinary Actions - 11/9/12

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Indiana Lawyer Disciplinary Actions

The Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission brings charges against attorneys who have violated the state’s rules for admission to the bar and Rules of Professional Conduct. The Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications brings charges against judges, judicial officers, or judicial candidates for misconduct. Details of attorneys’ and judges’ actions for which they are being disciplined by the Supreme Court will be included unless they are not a matter of public record under the court’s rules.

Public reprimand
Martin A. McCloskey, of Elkhart County, has been publicly reprimanded by the Indiana Supreme Court, per an Oct. 24 order. The reprimand is due to his handling of an appeal and petition seeking relief under 28 U.S.C. Section 2255 for D.H. in 2007. McCloskey had no experience with either procedure. The appeal was dismissed in 2008 and D.H.’s daughter terminated McCloskey’s representation before the Section 2255 petition was filed.

McCloskey had no disciplinary history, was cooperative with the disciplinary commission, and has a practice of refunding any unused portion of any advanced payment.

The justices found he violated Ind. Professional Conduct Rules 1.1: failure to provide competent representation; 1.3: failure to act with reasonable diligence and promptness; 1.5(a): charging an unreasonable fee; and 3.2: failure to expedite litigation consistent with the interests of a client. The costs of the proceeding are assessed against McCloskey.

Suspension
Anna E. Fulkerson, of Allen County, has been suspended without automatic reinstatement after the Indiana Supreme Court revoked her probationary reinstatement to the practice of law, per an Oct. 18 order.

Fulkerson was suspended without automatic reinstatement in October 2009; she petitioned for reinstatement in October 2010, which was granted in 2011 subject to completion of at least two years of probation on terms determined by the Judges and Lawyers Assistance Program.

The disciplinary commission sought to have her probation revoked this year, alleging that she materially violated terms of the JLAP monitoring agreement, including not participating in monthly therapy sessions or signing a release to allow JLAP staff to obtain a report from her pain management specialist.

Fulkerson responded that she had been laid off from her minimum wage job, is seeking a job, and cooperates with JLAP on areas that do not involve financial obligations. The justices imposed the suspension after finding that she did not sign the release for JLAP to contact the pain management specialist. The suspension begins Nov. 30, and the costs of the proceeding are assessed against her.

Janice R. Gambill, of Porter County, has had her suspension date moved to Nov. 26, 2012, per an Oct. 18 order from the Supreme Court. She sought to stay the execution of the disciplinary action and reconsideration of her suspension. The justices ordered Gambill suspended for no less than six months, without automatic reinstatement, beginning Oct. 19.

Gambill was disciplined over her representation of a client in a legal malpractice action. Any response by the disciplinary commission to her motion to reconsider had to be filed by Nov. 5.•

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