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Disciplinary Actions - 4/23/14

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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.

Suspension
Frank W. Hogan, of Marion County, has been suspended by the Indiana Supreme Court for commingling personal funds, his client funds and funds of his law firm in an attorney trust account. The April 3 order suspends Hogan for six months, effective the date of the order, all stayed subject to completion of 18 months of probation. The costs of the proceeding are assessed against him. Chief Justice Brent Dickson did not participate.

Deborah A. Riga Gardner, of Lake County, has been suspended by the Indiana Supreme Court for no less than five years, effective April 3. Gardner served as Schererville Town Court judge from January 2000 to December 2003. She was indicted in 2004 for extortion and fraud and pleaded guilty to getting kickbacks from more than 1,000 defendants who she’d sentenced to driving school and counseling classes she secretly owned and personally profited from. She was sentenced to 15 months in federal prison and ordered to pay $12,120 in restitution to the town and state. The costs of the proceeding are assessed against Gardner. Her suspension is without automatic reinstatement.

Tenneil E. Selner, of St. Joseph County, has been suspended from practice, effective immediately, per an April 10 order. Selner has been found guilty of felony wrongful distribution or possession of pseudoephedrine. She is already suspended for CLE noncompliance and dues nonpayment.

Randall B. Stiles, of Allen County, has been suspended from practice for noncooperation, effective immediately, per two April 10 orders. The suspension will continue until the executive secretary of the Disciplinary Commission certifies to the court that Stiles has cooperated fully with the investigation; the investigation or any disciplinary proceedings arising from the investigation are disposed of; or until further order of the Supreme Court. Stiles is already under suspension. The costs of the proceedings are assessed against him.

Private reprimand
The Indiana Supreme Court issued a private reprimand April 11 against a Lake County attorney for making false or misleading communications regarding legal services and for failing to include an office address in a public communication. The charges stem from his affiliation with the American Association of Motorcycle Injury Lawyers Inc. and information posted on that organization’s website that may be confusing to the public. The average viewer would not differentiate between the attorney and the statements about Law Tigers on the AAMIL website, so he is therefore responsible for objectionable content on the website. The identity of the respondent was kept anonymous by the court.•

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  • Mr Stiles
    I pd for a bankruptcy years ago with Mr Stiles and just this week received a garnishment from my pay! He never filed it even though he told me he would! Don't let this guy practice law ever again!!!

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  2. Hemp has very little THC which is needed to kill cancer cells! Growing cannabis plants for THC inside a hemp field will not work...where is the fear? From not really knowing about Cannabis and Hemp or just not listening to the people teaching you through testimonies and packets of info over the last few years! Wake up Hoosier law makers!

  3. If our State Government would sue for their rights to grow HEMP like Kentucky did we would not have these issues. AND for your INFORMATION many medical items are also made from HEMP. FOOD, FUEL,FIBER,TEXTILES and MEDICINE are all uses for this plant. South Bend was built on Hemp. Our states antiquated fear of cannabis is embarrassing on the world stage. We really need to lead the way rather than follow. Some day.. we will have freedom in Indiana. And I for one will continue to educate the good folks of this state to the beauty and wonder of this magnificent plant.

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