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Indianapolis attorney facing fraud charges released from jail

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A high-profile Indianapolis attorney accused of misappropriating $2.5 million in client funds was released from the Decatur County Jail on Monday after being held on a contempt of court charge.

William F. Conour, 65, was arrested on a warrant from the Decatur Circuit Court on July 25 after he failed to appear for a hearing to determine whether he had the funds from a $62,395.75 settlement he won for a client.

According to a criminal complaint filed in April, Conour is accused of engaging in a scheme from December 2000 to March 2012 to defraud his clients, using money obtained from new settlement funds to pay for old settlements and debts. Prosecutors charge he kept clients’ settlement proceeds for his own use.

Conour won the settlement that prompted the hearing in Decatur Circuit Court for a toddler who was injured in an auto accident. When Conour refused to produce information from the settlement, a lawyer for the girl’s mother filed a motion in June seeking a court hearing to get answers from him.

Conour failed to appear for the hearing on July 19, and the warrant was issued for his arrest.

He had been held at Decatur County Jail in Greensburg southeast of Indianapolis since July 25. Decatur Circuit Court Judge John A. Westhafer released him on Monday after his attorney, Richard Kammen of Indianapolis, filed an emergency motion to vacate the contempt charge.

Conour appeared at the hearing dressed in an orange jumpsuit with his hands and feet shackled. He did not speak.

Kammen won Conour’s release from jail after showing the judge a federal court order freezing his client’s funds until after the federal charges are resolved. Kammen told the judge that he would keep him informed of the court proceedings and that Conour would need to pay restitution to his clients if convicted.

“Under the law, we think that his incarceration should be terminated,” Kammen said when arguing for Conour’s release.

Westhafer said he would defer to federal authorities in their case against Conour because they have jurisdiction.

Timothy Devereux, of Ladendorf & Ladendorf, unsuccessfully argued that Conour should be kept in jail.

“The money’s gone,” he told the judge. “He hasn’t explained to anyone where the money went.”

Conour could be formally charged by federal prosecutors by Aug. 15. Prosecutors won an extension to win an indictment from a grand jury based on the voluminous bank and other financial records the jury has had to comb through, according to court documents.

Meanwhile, Conour early this month relinquished his law license to the Indiana bar.

Under Indiana law, he will have to wait five years if he wishes to petition for reinstatement to the bar.

Conour was admitted to the bar in 1974 and had no previous disciplinary history.

For years, he had been among the highest-profile attorneys in Indiana, representing individuals seriously injured or killed in construction accidents


 

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  1. A traditional parade of attorneys? Really Evansville? Y'all need to get out more. When is the traditional parade of notaries? Nurses? Sanitation workers? Pole dancers? I gotta wonder, do throngs of admiring citizens gather to laud these marching servants of the constitution? "Show us your billing records!!!" Hoping some video gets posted. Ours is not a narcissistic profession by any chance, is it? Nah .....

  2. My previous comment not an aside at court. I agree with smith. Good call. Just thought posting here a bit on the if it bleeds it leads side. Most attorneys need to think of last lines of story above.

  3. Hello everyone I'm Gina and I'm here for the exact same thing you are. I have the wonderful joy of waking up every morning to my heart being pulled out and sheer terror of what DCS is going to Throw at me and my family today.Let me start from the !bebeginning.My daughter lost all rights to her 3beautiful children due to Severe mental issues she no longer lives in our state and has cut all ties.DCS led her to belive that once she done signed over her right the babies would be with their family. We have faught screamed begged and anything else we could possibly due I hired a lawyer five grand down the drain.You know all I want is my babies home.I've done everything they have even asked me to do.Now their saying I can't see my grandchildren cause I'M on a prescription for paipain.I have a very rare blood disease it causes cellulitis a form of blood poisoning to stay dormant in my tissues and nervous system it also causes a ,blood clotting disorder.even with the two blood thinners I'm on I still Continue to develop them them also.DCS knows about my illness and still they refuse to let me see my grandchildren. I Love and miss them so much Please can anyone help Us my grandchildren and I they should be worrying about what toy there going to play with but instead there worrying about if there ever coming home again.THANK YOU DCS FOR ALL YOU'VE DONE. ( And if anyone at all has any ideals or knows who can help. Please contact (765)960~5096.only serious callers

  4. He must be a Rethuglican, for if from the other side of the aisle such acts would be merely personal and thus not something that attaches to his professional life. AND ... gotta love this ... oh, and on top of talking dirty on the phone, he also, as an aside, guess we should mention, might be important, not sure, but .... "In addition to these allegations, Keaton was accused of failing to file an appeal after he collected advance payment from a client seeking to challenge a ruling that the client repay benefits because of unreported income." rimshot

  5. I am not a fan of some of the 8.4 discipline we have seen for private conduct-- but this was so egregious and abusive and had so many points of bad conduct relates to the law and the lawyer's status as a lawyer that it is clearly a proper and just disbarment. A truly despicable account of bad acts showing unfit character to practice law. I applaud the outcome.

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