Saturday, November 17, 2012

Benson And Head Butt

A  disciplinary case summary from the web page of the Idaho State Bar:

On November 13, 2012, the Idaho Supreme Court issued a Disciplinary Order suspending Nampa attorney Benson Barrera from the practice of law for a period of one year with the entire year withheld and placing him on a two year disciplinary probation.

The Idaho Supreme Court found that Mr. Barrera violated Idaho Bar Commission Rule 505(b) [Conviction of a serious crime].  The Idaho Supreme Court’s Disciplinary Order followed a stipulated resolution of an Idaho State Bar disciplinary proceeding and related to the following circumstances.

In February 2011, Mr. Barrera was charged with felony aggravated assault.  The charge stemmed from an incident in which Mr. Barrera head-butted another man in a public venue.  Mr. Barrera described it as a bar fight with a former girlfriend’s ex-husband.  In October 2011, the jury found Mr. Barrera guilty of felony aggravated assault.  In December 2011, Mr. Barrera was sentenced to 60 days in jail with the possibility of early release and a five-year probation including terms that he complete a substance abuse evaluation and 200 hours of community service.  Mr. Barrera was released from custody early after serving 37 days.  In January 2012, Mr. Barrera appealed his conviction.

The Disciplinary Order provides that Mr. Barrera’s one-year suspension is withheld subject to the terms and conditions of a two-year probation, which include:  avoidance of any alcohol or drug-related criminal acts, or alcohol or drug-related traffic violations; a program of random urinalysis; that he comply with the terms of his criminal probation; and if Mr. Barrera admits or is found to have violated any of the Idaho Rules of Professional Conduct for which a public sanction is imposed for any conduct during the period of probation, regardless whether the admission or determination occurs after the expiration of the probationary period, the entire withheld suspension shall be imposed.

The withheld suspension does not limit Mr. Barrera’s eligibility to practice law.

(Mike Frisch)

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