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LaPorte County prosecutor suspended by Supreme Court

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LaPorte County Prosecutor Bob “Z” Szilagyi has been suspended by the Indiana Supreme Court for forging the names of his ex-wife and secretary on a quitclaim deed on the former couple’s marital home.

The June 20 order says that Szilagyi, who became the prosecuting attorney in December 2010, sought to refinance the home, which he was awarded in his 2009 divorce. After the divorce, his ex-wife had her name restored to her name prior to the marriage. Szilagyi’s secretary prepared a quitclaim deed for the ex-wife to sign using her restored name instead of the married name as was on the title. The ex-wife signed it without it being notarized.

The day of closing, Szilagyi saw his ex-wife had signed her restored name, so he asked his secretary to prepare a new deed. He then signed without their knowledge his ex-wife’s married name and his secretary’s name as the notary, using her notary stamp. His secretary was investigated by the Indiana secretary of state as a result of the notarization.

According to the order, Szilagyi forged the signatures to avoid “an unpleasant conversation” with his former wife explaining that he needed her help. The parties also cited that Szilagyi – who has been practicing for more than 30 years – should have known how his actions can impugn the reputation of lawyers and the legal community.

The justices found Szilagyi violated Indiana Professional Conduct Rules 8.4(c), engaging in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation; and 8.4(d), engaging in conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice.

Szilagyi has no disciplinary history and is remorseful and accepted responsibility for his conduct.

The justices imposed a 60-day suspension, which begins Aug. 1, with automatic reinstatement. Costs of the proceeding are assessed against him.

Before becoming prosecutor, Szilagyi had a private practice in LaPorte County and also served as eight years as city attorney for LaPorte.
 

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  1. This law is troubling in two respects: First, why wasn't the law reviewed "with the intention of getting all the facts surrounding the legislation and its actual impact on the marketplace" BEFORE it was passed and signed? Seems a bit backwards to me (even acknowledging that this is the Indiana state legislature we're talking about. Second, what is it with the laws in this state that seem to create artificial monopolies in various industries? Besides this one, the other law that comes to mind is the legislation that governed the granting of licenses to firms that wanted to set up craft distilleries. The licensing was limited to only those entities that were already in the craft beer brewing business. Republicans in this state talk a big game when it comes to being "business friendly". They're friendly alright . . . to certain businesses.

  2. Gretchen, Asia, Roberto, Tonia, Shannon, Cheri, Nicholas, Sondra, Carey, Laura ... my heart breaks for you, reaching out in a forum in which you are ignored by a professional suffering through both compassion fatigue and the love of filthy lucre. Most if not all of you seek a warm blooded Hoosier attorney unafraid to take on the government and plead that government officials have acted unconstitutionally to try to save a family and/or rescue children in need and/or press individual rights against the Leviathan state. I know an attorney from Kansas who has taken such cases across the country, arguing before half of the federal courts of appeal and presenting cases to the US S.Ct. numerous times seeking cert. Unfortunately, due to his zeal for the constitutional rights of peasants and willingness to confront powerful government bureaucrats seemingly violating the same ... he was denied character and fitness certification to join the Indiana bar, even after he was cleared to sit for, and passed, both the bar exam and ethics exam. And was even admitted to the Indiana federal bar! NOW KNOW THIS .... you will face headwinds and difficulties in locating a zealously motivated Hoosier attorney to face off against powerful government agents who violate the constitution, for those who do so tend to end up as marginalized as Paul Odgen, who was driven from the profession. So beware, many are mere expensive lapdogs, the kind of breed who will gladly take a large retainer, but then fail to press against the status quo and powers that be when told to heel to. It is a common belief among some in Indiana that those attorneys who truly fight the power and rigorously confront corruption often end up, actually or metaphorically, in real life or at least as to their careers, as dead as the late, great Gary Welch. All of that said, I wish you the very best in finding a Hoosier attorney with a fighting spirit to press your rights as far as you can, for you do have rights against government actors, no matter what said actors may tell you otherwise. Attorneys outside the elitist camp are often better fighters that those owing the powers that be for their salaries, corner offices and end of year bonuses. So do not be afraid to retain a green horn or unconnected lawyer, many of them are fine men and woman who are yet untainted by the "unique" Hoosier system.

  3. I am not the John below. He is a journalist and talk show host who knows me through my years working in Kansas government. I did no ask John to post the note below ...

  4. "...not those committed in the heat of an argument." If I ever see a man physically abusing a woman or a child and I'm close enough to intercede I will not ask him why he is abusing her/him. I will give him a split second to cease his attack and put his hands in the air while I call the police. If he continues, I will still call the police but to report, "Man down with a gunshot wound,"instead.

  5. And so the therapeutic state is weaonized. How soon until those with ideologies opposing the elite are disarmed in the name of mental health? If it can start anywhere it can start in the hoosiers' slavishly politically correct capital city.

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