Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Convicted And Disbarred

An attorney convicted of rape and other charges has been disbarred by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. This summary from the Bar's web page describes the criminal case:

On October 20, 2005, the respondent was convicted in the Worcester Superior Court of two counts of rape, indecent assault on a person fourteen or over, administering a drug for purpose of sexual intercourse, distribution of cocaine, furnishing liquor to a person under twenty-one years of age, and a drug violation in a school zone. The respondent was sentenced to state prison and required to register as a sex offender. Following these convictions, the respondent was temporarily suspended from the practice of law on January 9, 2006. See Matter of LeBlanc, 22 Mass. Att’y Disc. R. 458 (2006).

On February 3, 2009, the Appeals Court in Commonwealth v. LeBlanc, 73 Mass. App. Ct. 624 (2009), reversed the conviction for administering drugs for sexual intercourse but affirmed the remaining convictions. Bar counsel filed a petition for discipline on February 4, 2009. Proceedings were deferred while the criminal case was further appealed to the Supreme Judicial Court. Commonwealth v. LeBlanc, 456 Mass. 135 (2010), upheld all of the convictions except for administering a drug for sexual intercourse.

Universal Hub reports on the disposition of the criminal appeal:

The Supreme Judicial Court today dismissed Gary LeBlanc's conviction on a charge of drugging a person for unlawful sexual intercourse because he only made the cocaine and beer available to her but did not force her to consume it.

However, the ruling upholds LeBlanc's convictions on two counts of rape and one count each of indecent assault and battery, distribution of cocaine, procuring liquor for a person under 21 and distribution of cocaine in a school zone, because the 18-year-old, who had previously and repeatedly rebuffed his efforts at sex, was so bombed out of her mind she was unable to give consent for intercourse - or keep him off her.

According to the ruling, LeBlanc, at the time a 50-year-old lawyer in Gardner, had been rebuffed several times in his efforts to bed the teen - who at least once outright laughed at him. But she attended a 2004 Super Bowl part at her aunt's house, which he also attended and where she accepted his offer of cocaine. Over the next day, she went to his place twice for beer and more cocaine. Even in her drugged state, she resisted him, but eventually consumed so much beer and coke - 12 beers on an empty stomach - that by the time her friends managed to get her home, her father noticed she "looked like a zombie."

The SJC ruled that the state law on drugging a person for sex requires some element of force or coercion and that merely providing access to a banquet of alcohol and drugs is not the same as "giving" somebody those substances.

(Mike Frisch)

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/legal_profession/2010/08/an-attorney-convicted-of-rape-and-other-charges-has-been-disbarred-by-the-massachusetts-supreme-judicial-court-this-summary.html

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