Thursday, December 6, 2012
In a case involving intentional misappropriation of entrusted funds over an extended period, the Ohio Supreme Court imposed a fully-stayed two-year suspension with conditions.
The attorney had practiced for over 30 years. Part of this practice was personal injury plaintiffs work.
When his wife left him in 2005, he became obsessed with getting her back. He lent over $69,500 in escrowed funds to his wife starting in 2009. The money was in escrow while the attorney's negogiated over third party claims.
The money was used to fund her private investigator business.
The misconduct extended over a 17-month period and was revealed by an account overdraft.
When the misconduct came to light, the attorney was fully cooperative. He sought mental health treatment and consulted with the bar's lawyer assistance program. No client was harmed and restitution was made.
A fine feature of the Ohio Supreme Court is that it makes oral arguments available on video. This argument in this case is linked here. (Mike Frisch)