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Disciplinary Actions 8/28/13

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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
Douglas S. Followell, of Sullivan, has been suspended from the practice of law for a period of not less than 150 days, without automatic reinstatement, beginning Sept. 27, 2013.

Followell was on probation imposed by the Indiana Supreme Court in 2009, with monitoring by the Indiana Judges and Lawyers Assistance Program, as a result of his conviction of three alcohol-related crimes that year. The court order provided that violation of the probation would result in the commission filing a motion to revoke the probation and request that Followell actively serve a 180-day suspension (30 days actively served) that had been stayed subject to the completion of probation. In May 2012, Followell was convicted of driving under the influence in Florida. On May 9, the commission filed a verified motion to revoke Followell’s probation, pursuant to Admission and Discipline Rule 23(17.2)(a), asserting his arrest and conviction violated the conditions of his probation.

Jeremy S. Brenman, of Bloomington, has been suspended from the practice of law, effective immediately, for noncooperation with the Disciplinary Commission. On May 2, the Indiana Supreme Court ordered Brenman, who is already under suspension orders, to show cause why he should not be suspended for failure to cooperate with the investigation of a grievance filed against him. Brenman did not respond within 10 days of service of the order. The order also includes reimbursement to the commission of $512.22 by Brenman for the costs of prosecuting the proceeding.

Patricia S. Beecher, of Gary, has been suspended from the practice of law, effective immediately, due to disability, pursuant to Admission and Discipline Rule 23(25). In addition to the Verified Petition to Determine Disability submitted by the Disciplinary Commission prior to suspension, Beecher had submitted an Affidavit of Consent to Disability Suspension.

Dan J. May, of Kokomo, has been suspended from the practice of law for 60 days, beginning Sept. 27, 2013. At the conclusion of the suspension, provided there are no other suspensions in effect, May will be automatically reinstated, subject to the conditions of Admission and Discipline Rule 23(4)(c). Costs of the proceeding are also assessed against May.

The suspension stems from May’s actions following a hearing in a divorce case. He grabbed his client by the arms, pushing him in a way that caused him to be bent backward over the courtroom rail. May was charged with battery and entered into a pre-trial diversion agreement with the prosecutor.

Resignation
The resignation from the Indiana bar of Shane E. Beal, of Marion, has been accepted, effective immediately, by the Indiana Supreme Court. Beal is ineligible to petition for reinstatement for five years from the Aug. 14, 2013, order date. The order states that the egregious misconduct charged in the verified complaint would have resulted in permanent disbarment had Beal not chosen voluntary resignation from the bar, and if he seeks reinstatement the misconduct admitted in his affidavit of resignation, as well as any other allegations of misconduct, will be addressed in the reinstatement process.

Any attorney disciplinary proceedings pending against Beal were dismissed as moot because of his resignation, and the costs of the proceeding are assessed against him.

The resignation from the Indiana bar of William R. Wallace III, of Princeton, has been accepted, effective immediately, by the Indiana Supreme Court. Wallace is ineligible to petition for reinstatement for five years from the Aug. 14, 2013, order date. The order states that the egregious misconduct charged in the verified complaint would have resulted in permanent disbarment had Wallace not chosen voluntary resignation from the bar, and if he seeks reinstatement the misconduct admitted in his affidavit of resignation, as well as any other allegations of misconduct, will be addressed in the reinstatement process.

Any attorney disciplinary proceedings pending against Wallace were dismissed as moot because of his resignation, and the costs of the proceeding are assessed against him.•
 

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  1. I gave tempparry guardship to a friend of my granddaughter in 2012. I went to prison. I had custody. My daughter went to prison to. We are out. My daughter gave me custody but can get her back. She was not order to give me custody . but now we want granddaughter back from friend. She's 14 now. What rights do we have

  2. This sure is not what most who value good governance consider the Rule of Law to entail: "In a letter dated March 2, which Brizzi forwarded to IBJ, the commission dismissed the grievance “on grounds that there is not reasonable cause to believe that you are guilty of misconduct.”" Yet two month later reasonable cause does exist? (Or is the commission forging ahead, the need for reasonable belief be damned? -- A seeming violation of the Rules of Profession Ethics on the part of the commission) Could the rule of law theory cause one to believe that an explanation is in order? Could it be that Hoosier attorneys live under Imperial Law (which is also a t-word that rhymes with infamy) in which the Platonic guardians can do no wrong and never owe the plebeian class any explanation for their powerful actions. (Might makes it right?) Could this be a case of politics directing the commission, as celebrated IU Mauer Professor (the late) Patrick Baude warned was happening 20 years ago in his controversial (whisteblowing) ethics lecture on a quite similar topic: http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1498&context=ilj

  3. I have a case presently pending cert review before the SCOTUS that reveals just how Indiana regulates the bar. I have been denied licensure for life for holding the wrong views and questioning the grand inquisitors as to their duties as to state and federal constitutional due process. True story: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS Shorter, Amici brief serving to frame issue as misuse of govt licensure: https://www.scribd.com/doc/312841269/Thomas-More-Society-Amicus-Brown-v-Ind-Bd-of-Law-Examiners

  4. Here's an idea...how about we MORE heavily regulate the law schools to reduce the surplus of graduates, driving starting salaries up for those new grads, so that we can all pay our insane amount of student loans off in a reasonable amount of time and then be able to afford to do pro bono & low-fee work? I've got friends in other industries, radiology for example, and their schools accept a very limited number of students so there will never be a glut of new grads and everyone's pay stays high. For example, my radiologist friend's school accepted just six new students per year.

  5. I totally agree with John Smith.

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