December 5, 2008
Outbursts Violate Rule 8.4(b)
A Virginia lawyer was admonished for violating Virginia's version of Rule 8.4(b), which prohibits a criminal or "deliberately wrongful" act that reflects adversely on honesty, integrity or fitness to practice law as a result of two incidents. The lawyer had sued a former client for defamation. While leaving the courtroom, opposing counsel counsel accused him of defaming the client. The lawyer called opposing counsel a "f***ing liar" and suggested they "take the matter outside." A court bailiff and a law partner prevented further escalation of the encounter.
Later, the lawyer arrived at opposing counsel's office for the former client's deposition and was advised that the deposition had been canceled. He threw items down on the secretary's desk and said that he "did not have to take this bulls**t."
Other charges that had been brought in the matter were dismissed. (Mike Frisch)
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