Justices impose reciprocal discipline on attorney suspended in Southern District for resisting conviction

An Indianapolis attorney suspended from practicing in the Indiana Southern District Court following a misdemeanor resisting law enforcement conviction has received reciprocal discipline from the Indiana Supreme Court.

Ashley Kincaid Eve was indefinitely suspended from the practice of law in Indiana pursuant to a Thursday order from the Indiana Supreme Court. The Supreme Court order came after the Indiana Southern District Court suspended Eve in February following her January conviction of Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement.

Online court records indicate Kincaid was charged with one felony and two misdemeanors in June 2019. Two of those charges — battery against a public safety official and disorderly conduct — were dismissed on the state’s motion in July 2020.

According to a probable cause affidavit filed in June 2019, Eve was a passenger in a car that was stopped by law enforcement when the incident took place. While an officer tried to speak with the driver, Eve “was constantly talking over him.”

Eve then began telling officers that she was an attorney and wanted to watch the driver’s field sobriety test, according to the affidavit. Officers told Eve to remain in the vehicle, but she attempted to open her door twice. Westfield Police Department officer Taylor McCorkle kept the door shut and told her to remain in the vehicle.

“During this time, the accused was yelling that she was allowed to get out of the vehicle even though we told her not to,” the affidavit says. “During this time, the accused was acting belligerent, and was growing more hostile. She was asked to stop yelling and to stop opening the door.”

However, Eve kicked against the door while McCorkle was standing on the other side. She then kicked the door a second time, causing McCorkle “to fall back, over a curb, almost completely off the roadway,” according to the affidavit.

Eve then exited the vehicle, and McCorkle observed that she had slurred speech, watery eyes and unsteady balance, along with smelling like alcohol. She had already told another officer that she had been drinking that night, and there was an empty bottle of wine in the floorboard where she had been sitting.

Officers tried to place Eve in handcuffs, but she refused to put both arms behind her back. Once she was in the cuffs, she went limp in an attempt not to enter the police cruise, the affidavit says.

Eve was placed in the cruiser and buckled in, but she was able to unbuckle her seat belt and exit the cruiser. Officers re-apprehended her and placed her back in the cruiser and she was taken to the Hamilton County Jail.

“During the entire encounter, the accused was saying that we were violating the law, and that we were not allowed to do this to an attorney,” the affidavit says.

Court records indicate Eve was accepted into a pretrial diversion program in August 2020, but the matter was later reset for a bench trial in Hamilton Superior Court on the resisting law enforcement charge.

Magistrate Judge Chadwick Hall found Eve guilty of that charge and sentenced her to 365 days, with credit for four days and the remaining time suspended to one year of probation. Eve was ordered to undergo a drug/alcohol assessment and perform 20 hours of community service with Horizon House.

Pursuant to Southern District of Indiana Local Rule of Disciplinary Enforcement 6(a), a lawyer who is convicted of a “serious crime” is automatically suspended from practicing in the district court. The February order  signed by Chief Judge Tanya Walton Pratt determined Eve’s conviction was a “serious crime” because it “involves interference with the administration of justice.”

The Supreme Court’s Thursday order notes Eve “acquiesce(ed) to the imposition of reciprocal discipline.”

According to the federal court rule, “The suspension will continue until after final disposition of an appeal of the conviction, proceedings on remand after an appeal, and any disciplinary investigation and proceeding based on the conduct that resulted in the conviction.”

“Respondent asserts that she disputes the lawfulness of her arrest, plans to appeal the conviction, and has instituted a civil rights action relating to the arrest” in federal court, Pratt wrote.

The Supreme Court order says Eve can move for release from reciprocal discipline if she is reinstated to the Southern Indiana District Court, provided no other suspensions are in effect.

The case in the Indiana Supreme Court is In the Matter of: Ashley K. Eve, 22S-DI-95.

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