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State representative's attacker permanently disbarred

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The Indianapolis attorney who violently attacked and attempted to kill a state representative has been permanently disbarred by the Indiana Supreme Court.

Justices issued a four-page opinion Thursday in The Matter of Augustus J. Mendenhall, No. 32S00-1005-DI-230, which involves attorney Augustus Mendenhall’s October 2009 attack on attorney Rep. Ed DeLaney, D-Indianapolis.

Mendenhall blamed DeLaney for his family’s legal issues dating back more than two decades and held a grudge against the lawyer who had recently been elected to the Indiana House of Representatives. Mendenhall hid his real identity and posed as a potential client to meet DeLaney in Carmel for a purported property purchase. He attacked DeLaney until a passerby alerted police.

Mendenhall was convicted as guilty but mentally ill of five crimes that included attempted murder and sentenced to 40 years in prison.

The Supreme Court issued an interim suspension of Mendenhall in June 2010.

Noting that disbarment is reserved for the most serious misconduct, the justices concluded that Mendenhall violated Indiana Professional Conduct Rule 8.4(b) by committing criminal acts that reflect adversely on the lawyer's honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as a lawyer.

Justice Frank Sullivan did not participate in the case.

 

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  1. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  2. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  3. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

  4. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

  5. "No one is safe when the Legislature is in session."

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