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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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  1. Call it unauthorized law if you must, a regulatory wrong, but it was fraud and theft well beyond that, a seeming crime! "In three specific cases, the hearing officer found that Westerfield did little to no work for her clients but only issued a partial refund or no refund at all." That is theft by deception, folks. "In its decision to suspend Westerfield, the Supreme Court noted that she already had a long disciplinary history dating back to 1996 and had previously been suspended in 2004 and indefinitely suspended in 2005. She was reinstated in 2009 after finally giving the commission a response to the grievance for which she was suspended in 2004." WOW -- was the Indiana Supreme Court complicit in her fraud? Talk about being on notice of a real bad actor .... "Further, the justices noted that during her testimony, Westerfield was “disingenuous and evasive” about her relationship with Tope and attempted to distance herself from him. They also wrote that other aggravating factors existed in Westerfield’s case, such as her lack of remorse." WOW, and yet she only got 18 months on the bench, and if she shows up and cries for them in a year and a half, and pays money to JLAP for group therapy ... back in to ride roughshod over hapless clients (or are they "marks") once again! Aint Hoosier lawyering a great money making adventure!!! Just live for the bucks, even if filthy lucre, and come out a-ok. ME on the other hand??? Lifetime banishment for blowing the whistle on unconstitutional governance. Yes, had I ripped off clients or had ANY disciplinary history for doing that I would have fared better, most likely, as that it would have revealed me motivated by Mammon and not Faith. Check it out if you doubt my reading of this, compare and contrast the above 18 months with my lifetime banishment from court, see appendix for Bar Examiners report which the ISC adopted without substantive review: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS

  2. Wow, over a quarter million dollars? That is a a lot of commissary money! Over what time frame? Years I would guess. Anyone ever try to blow the whistle? Probably not, since most Hoosiers who take notice of such things realize that Hoosier whistleblowers are almost always pilloried. If someone did blow the whistle, they were likely fired. The persecution of whistleblowers is a sure sign of far too much government corruption. Details of my own personal experience at the top of Hoosier governance available upon request ... maybe a "fake news" media outlet will have the courage to tell the stories of Hoosier whistleblowers that the "real" Hoosier media (cough) will not deign to touch. (They are part of the problem.)

  3. So if I am reading it right, only if and when African American college students agree to receive checks labeling them as "Negroes" do they receive aid from the UNCF or the Quaker's Educational Fund? In other words, to borrow from the Indiana Appellate Court, "the [nonprofit] supposed to be [their] advocate, refers to [students] in a racially offensive manner. While there is no evidence that [the nonprofits] intended harm to [African American students], the harm was nonetheless inflicted. [Black students are] presented to [academia and future employers] in a racially offensive manner. For these reasons, [such] performance [is] deficient and also prejudice[ial]." Maybe even DEPLORABLE???

  4. I'm the poor soul who spent over 10 years in prison with many many other prisoners trying to kill me for being charged with a sex offense THAT I DID NOT COMMIT i was in jail for a battery charge for helping a friend leave a boyfriend who beat her I've been saying for over 28 years that i did not and would never hurt a child like that mine or anybody's child but NOBODY wants to believe that i might not be guilty of this horrible crime or think that when i say that ALL the paperwork concerning my conviction has strangely DISAPPEARED or even when the long beach judge re-sentenced me over 14 months on a already filed plea bargain out of another districts court then had it filed under a fake name so i could not find while trying to fight my conviction on appeal in a nut shell people are ALWAYS quick to believe the worst about some one well I DID NOT HURT ANY CHILD EVER IN MY LIFE AND HAVE SAID THIS FOR ALMOST 30 YEARS please if anybody can me get some kind of justice it would be greatly appreciated respectfully written wrongly accused Brian Valenti

  5. A high ranking Indiana supreme Court operative caught red handed leading a group using the uber offensive N word! She must denounce or be denounced! (Or not since she is an insider ... rules do not apply to them). Evidence here: http://m.indianacompanies.us/friends-educational-fund-for-negroes.364110.company.v2#top_info

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