Disciplinary Commission

Camm prosecutor reprimanded for book deal

January 13, 2017
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court has imposed a public reprimand against a Floyd County prosecutor charged with violations of three Professional Conduct Rules after he failed to recuse himself from a case he planned to write a book about.
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Indiana lawyers now must report misdemeanor convictions

November 8, 2016
IL Staff
Indiana attorneys now are explicitly required to report to the Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission any misdemeanor or felony conviction under sweeping changes to Admission and Discipline Rule 23.
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Indiana attorney with failed Florida firm calls ethics complaint against her a ‘witch hunt’

November 2, 2016
Dave Stafford
By outward appearances, Divina K. Westerfield is an attorney practicing in Indianapolis. But looks can be deceiving.
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Seymour attorney with Alzheimer’s suspended for disability

October 28, 2016
IL Staff
A Seymour attorney who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and who is facing a felony fraud charge has been suspended from the practice of law in Indiana because of his mental disability.
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Bench, bar rally behind prosecutor facing discipline

October 19, 2016
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission brought a formal complaint against Johnson County Prosecutor Bradley Cooper for press comments attributed to him in reaction to a judge's grant of post-conviction relief for convicted murderer Michael Overstreet. A parade of character witnesses traveled to a distant hearing to rally behind Cooper.
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Commission calls for Floyd County prosecutor's suspension

October 7, 2016
 Associated Press
The Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission has asked the state's high court to suspend Floyd County Prosecutor Keith Henderson over findings that he acted unethically in a triple-murder case.
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Prosecutor faces discipline for press comments over ruling for killer

September 23, 2016
Dave Stafford
Johnson County Prosecutor Bradley Cooper faces possible professional sanctions for comments he made to the Indianapolis Star and the Associated Press after a judge ruled a man facing the death penalty wasn’t competent to be executed.
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Seymour lawyer faces felony count, disciplinary case

September 9, 2016
Dave Stafford
A Seymour lawyer who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease faces a felony charge and a disciplinary complaint seeking his emergency suspension from the practice of law.
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Prosecutor faces ethics sanction for book deal in Camm case

August 24, 2016
Dave Stafford
Floyd County Prosecutor Keith Henderson should be reprimanded by the Indiana Supreme Court for a book deal on a high-profile murder case against former Indiana State Trooper David Camm, recommends a hearing officer in Henderson’s discipline case. The hearing officer blasted the conduct of lawyers on both sides of the ethics matter.
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Ties to Florida firm burn Indiana lawyers

July 27, 2016
Dave Stafford
Small-town lawyer Justin Wall argues in his discipline case that he’s fighting not just for his career, but for the livelihoods of his Huntington co-workers and the needs of his community after he tried to drum up business with a regretful decision to answer a Craigslist ad four years ago.
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Judge frees man held 3 years after molesting acquittals

July 1, 2016
 Associated Press
A Portage man held without bond for three years has been acquitted of four counts of child molesting and ordered immediately released from jail.
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Ex-prosecutor Brizzi faces disciplinary complaint

May 19, 2016
Scott Olson, IBJ Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission is recommending former Marion County Prosecutor Carl J. Brizzi III be punished for "a pattern of misconduct" that occurred during his time in office.
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Supreme Court disbars South Bend lawyer

May 19, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Supreme Court issued a disbarment decision Wednesday finding Elton Johnson committed attorney misconduct in a number of ways. The per curiam decision lists incompetent representation, converting client funds and failing to cooperate with the disciplinary process as reasons for Johnson's disbarment.
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3 reappointed to Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission

April 22, 2016
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court reappointed three members to its disciplinary commission Thursday. Nancy L. Cross, Andrielle M. Metzel and Trent A. McCain’s terms were scheduled to expire June 30, and will now serve another five-year term.
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Rewriting discipline rules for Indiana attorneys

March 23, 2016
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission would be limited to a one-year period of internal investigation of lawyers under a key change in an overhaul of rules governing attorney discipline.
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Supreme Court seeks comment on proposed disciplinary rule changes

March 1, 2016
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court has spent two years working on changes to Indiana Admission and Discipline Rule 23 and is now seeking comment on proposed changes by April 30.
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2 found in contempt for practicing law

February 2, 2016
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court has fined two attorneys after finding them in contempt for practicing law while one was suspended and after one had resigned from the bar nearly 10 years ago.
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Law office whistleblower key in disbarment

December 16, 2015
Dave Stafford
The former office manager who blew the whistle on an Indianapolis lawyer disbarred recently by the Indiana Supreme Court said he paid a personal and professional price and endured threats from his ex-boss after reporting his egregiously unethical conduct.
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Justices disbar lawyer for theft of $150K from clients, ‘brazenness’

December 1, 2015
Dave Stafford
An Indianapolis lawyer has been disbarred for stealing about $150,000 from his clients, “disclosing client confidences for purposes of both retaliation and amusement, threatening and intimidating his office staff (and) lying pervasively to all comers,” according to the Indiana Supreme Court.
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Prosecutor testifies in disciplinary hearing over Camm book deal

October 20, 2015
 Associated Press
An attorney who led the prosecution against a former Indiana State trooper acquitted of killing his wife and two children says a requested ethics investigation was a tactic to get him off the case.
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Disciplinary Actions: 3/25/15

March 25, 2015
IL Staff
Read about a recent suspension issued by the Indiana Supreme Court.
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Lawyer who tried to trade representation for sex suspended

March 24, 2015
Dave Stafford
A former Marion County public defender accused of offering to trade legal service for sex with a prostitute has been suspended from the practice of law.
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Floyd County prosecutor accused of misconduct

March 20, 2015
 Associated Press
A complaint has been filed against an attorney who led the prosecution against a former Indiana State trooper acquitted of killing his wife and two children.
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Rare emergency suspension issued by Supreme Court

February 25, 2015
Dave Stafford
Merrillville attorney Robert E. Stochel spent a few nights in jail after a judge found him in contempt for his evasiveness, but so far he’s avoided criminal charges despite allegedly stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from clients and a former associate.
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Disciplinary Actions - 12/17/14

December 17, 2014
IL Staff
Read who's been publicly reprimanded or suspended by the Indiana Supreme Court.
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  1. Yes diversity is so very important. With justice Rucker off ... the court is too white. Still too male. No Hispanic justice. No LGBT justice. And there are other checkboxes missing as well. This will not do. I say hold the seat until a physically handicapped Black Lesbian of Hispanic heritage and eastern religious creed with bipolar issues can be located. Perhaps an international search, with a preference for third world candidates, is indicated. A non English speaker would surely increase our diversity quotient!!!

  2. First, I want to thank Justice Rucker for his many years of public service, not just at the appellate court level for over 25 years, but also when he served the people of Lake County as a Deputy Prosecutor, City Attorney for Gary, IN, and in private practice in a smaller, highly diverse community with a history of serious economic challenges, ethnic tensions, and recently publicized but apparently long-standing environmental health risks to some of its poorest residents. Congratulations for having the dedication & courage to practice law in areas many in our state might have considered too dangerous or too poor at different points in time. It was also courageous to step into a prominent and highly visible position of public service & respect in the early 1990's, remaining in a position that left you open to state-wide public scrutiny (without any glitches) for over 25 years. Yes, Hoosiers of all backgrounds can take pride in your many years of public service. But people of color who watched your ascent to the highest levels of state government no doubt felt even more as you transcended some real & perhaps some perceived social, economic, academic and professional barriers. You were living proof that, with hard work, dedication & a spirit of public service, a person who shared their same skin tone or came from the same county they grew up in could achieve great success. At the same time, perhaps unknowingly, you helped fellow members of the judiciary, court staff, litigants and the public better understand that differences that are only skin-deep neither define nor limit a person's character, abilities or prospects in life. You also helped others appreciate that people of different races & backgrounds can live and work together peacefully & productively for the greater good of all. Those are truths that didn't have to be written down in court opinions. Anyone paying attention could see that truth lived out every day you devoted to public service. I believe you have been a "trailblazer" in Indiana's legal community and its judiciary. I also embrace your belief that society's needs can be better served when people in positions of governmental power reflect the many complexions of the population that they serve. Whether through greater understanding across the existing racial spectrum or through the removal of some real and some perceived color-based, hope-crushing barriers to life opportunities & success, movement toward a more reflective representation of the population being governed will lead to greater and uninterrupted respect for laws designed to protect all peoples' rights to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness. Thanks again for a job well-done & for the inevitable positive impact your service has had - and will continue to have - on countless Hoosiers of all backgrounds & colors.

  3. Diversity is important, but with some limitations. For instance, diversity of experience is a great thing that can be very helpful in certain jobs or roles. Diversity of skin color is never important, ever, under any circumstance. To think that skin color changes one single thing about a person is patently racist and offensive. Likewise, diversity of values is useless. Some values are better than others. In the case of a supreme court justice, I actually think diversity is unimportant. The justices are not to impose their own beliefs on rulings, but need to apply the law to the facts in an objective manner.

  4. Have been seeing this wonderful physician for a few years and was one of his patients who told him about what we were being told at CVS. Multiple ones. This was a witch hunt and they shold be ashamed of how patients were treated. Most of all, CVS should be ashamed for what they put this physician through. So thankful he fought back. His office is no "pill mill'. He does drug testing multiple times a year and sees patients a minimum of four times a year.

  5. Brian W, I fear I have not been sufficiently entertaining to bring you back. Here is a real laugh track that just might do it. When one is grabbed by the scruff of his worldview and made to choose between his Confession and his profession ... it is a not a hard choice, given the Confession affects eternity. But then comes the hardship in this world. Imagine how often I hear taunts like yours ... "what, you could not even pass character and fitness after they let you sit and pass their bar exam ... dude, there must really be something wrong with you!" Even one of the Bishop's foremost courtiers said that, when explaining why the RCC refused to stand with me. You want entertaining? How about watching your personal economy crash while you have a wife and five kids to clothe and feed. And you can't because you cannot work, because those demanding you cast off your Confession to be allowed into "their" profession have all the control. And you know that they are wrong, dead wrong, and that even the professional code itself allows your Faithful stand, to wit: "A lawyer may refuse to comply with an obligation imposed by law upon a good faith belief that no valid obligation exists. The provisions of Rule 1.2(d) concerning a good faith challenge to the validity, scope, meaning or application of the law apply to challenges of legal regulation of the practice of law." YET YOU ARE A NONPERSON before the BLE, and will not be heard on your rights or their duties to the law -- you are under tyranny, not law. And so they win in this world, you lose, and you lose even your belief in the rule of law, and demoralization joins poverty, and very troubling thoughts impeaching self worth rush in to fill the void where your career once lived. Thoughts you did not think possible. You find yourself a failure ... in your profession, in your support of your family, in the mirror. And there is little to keep hope alive, because tyranny rules so firmly and none, not the church, not the NGO's, none truly give a damn. Not even a new court, who pay such lip service to justice and ancient role models. You want entertainment? Well if you are on the side of the courtiers running the system that has crushed me, as I suspect you are, then Orwell must be a real riot: "There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed. But always — do not forget this, Winston — always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always, at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless. If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — forever." I never thought they would win, I always thought that at the end of the day the rule of law would prevail. Yes, the rule of man's law. Instead power prevailed, so many rules broken by the system to break me. It took years, but, finally, the end that Dr Bowman predicted is upon me, the end that she advised the BLE to take to break me. Ironically, that is the one thing in her far left of center report that the BLE (after stamping, in red ink, on Jan 22) is uninterested in, as that the BLE and ADA office that used the federal statute as a sword now refuses to even dialogue on her dire prediction as to my fate. "C'est la vie" Entertaining enough for you, status quo defender?

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