Friday, June 28, 2013

Justice Delayed

And today's award for chutzpah goes to Hearing Committee No. Three of the District of Columbia Board on Professional Responsibility.

That august tribunal was entrusted with the matter of In re Rohde, Bar Docket No. 347-05. The case involves a conviction for a hit-and-run in Virginia. The attorney raised alcoholism as a possible mitigating factor under the In re Kersey doctrine.

The hearings were held on December 11-12, 2007 and January 15, 2008. Briefing was completed shortly thereafter.

Then. nothing...for over five years.

No adjudication of the misconduct allegations, attorney free to practice law.

Well, yesterday Hearing Committee No. Three sprang into action.

They issued an order directing the parties to submit fresh evidence on his alcoholism and recovery because the evidence before it was too "stale."

Words fail.

Note: I represented Bar Counsel in mitigation phase of the Kersey case. It took less time to resolve the alcoholism as mitigation issue when it was a question of first impression.

Our prior coverage is linked here. (Mike Frisch)

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Just plain absurd, but too many tribunals and courts have no sense of urgency about the peoples' disputes that are entrusted to them. Justice delayed is justice denied.

Posted by: Old Lawyer | Jun 29, 2013 6:41:39 AM

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