Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Meth Conviction Draws Suspension

The Oklahoma Supreme Court sanctioned a convicted attorney

This case is a summary disciplinary proceeding against Respondent, John Knox Bounds, pursuant to Rule 7.1, 5 O.S. 2011, Ch. 1, App. 1-A. Respondent was convicted in Choctaw County of felony unlawful possession of a controlled substance, methamphetamine, and a misdemeanor of unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia. On November 21, 2017, Respondent received a two-year deferred sentence with probation on the felony conviction; and he was sentenced to imprisonment for 30 days on the misdemeanor conviction.

On December 11, 2017, we issued an Order of Interim Suspension directing Respondent to file a response no later than December 22, 2017 to show cause, if any, why this interim suspension should be set aside. Respondent did not file a timely response and he did not request a hearing. He thus waived his right to contest the interim suspension. There was no hearing before the Professional Responsibility Tribunal.

The Bar Association requested this Court to impose an order suspending Respondent for a period of two years and one day. Respondent sought leave to file a response out of time. He apologized to this Court for his untimely failure to respond and advised this Court that after his release from jail in early December, 2017, he was acutely ill for six weeks. Respondent agreed to a suspension that would continue until after the expiration of his deferred criminal sentence in November, 2019.

Sanction

Respondent does not dispute the Bar Association's recommendation for a suspension period of two years and one day. Although Respondent has not had any prior incidents before this Court, we find his criminal convictions for possession of methamphetamine and possession of drug paraphernalia of considerable concern. We adopt the recommendation of the Bar Association for a suspension of a period of two years and one day from the date this opinion becomes final. State ex rel. Oklahoma Bar Ass'n. v. Soderstrom2013 OK 101, ΒΆ 8, 321 P.3d 159, 160.

In the event Respondent seeks reinstatement, it will be conditioned upon his continued sobriety, as it is essential to his rehabilitation and to the successful completion of his probation.

Vice Chief Judge Gurich would run the two year suspension from the date of the interim suspension.

10KTEN ABC reported on the arrest.

Choctaw County deputies say a baby was brought into the hospital "high," and now five people, including her mother, and a longtime local attorney are under arrest.

The sheriff in Hugo says this isn't the first similar case. They've had two kids bring meth into elementary school in Fort Towson and Hugo in the past month, but this time, he says it was worse and involved a baby.

Deputies say they found an 11-month-old girl at the hospital in Hugo acting strangely."She was really scratching at her face, at her ears, just very animated," says Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Larry Hendrix.

The toddler tested positive for methamphetamine. "Whether she got it by them smoking the meth in a pipe and she may have ingested it, or if crawling about the floor she may have touched something and put it into her mouth," says Choctaw County Sheriff Terry Park.

"The doctor said that indeed she did have an allergic reaction and that it was a good thing that they brought her to the hospital because things could have turned out much worse," says Hendrix.

After further investigation, deputies served a warrant Saturday at a home in the 1300 block of South 2nd. "A majority of them were just there hanging out doing whatever they do at those houses," says Park.

Deputies say they found 57 grams of meth rolled up in a newspaper in the bedroom of defense attorney John Bounds, 64, who works juvenile cases and used to be a prosecutor.

NewsOK reported on the murder of the attorney's father in 1977. (Mike Frisch)

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/legal_profession/2018/03/the-oklahoma-supreme-court-this-case-is-a-summary-disciplinary-proceeding-against-respondent-john-knox-bounds-pursuant-to.html

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