Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Swift Action And Its Opposite

The Ohio Supreme Court has imposed an interim suspension of an attorney with a Washington, D.C.  address for a Virginia felony conviction.

On certified entry of felony conviction. Christopher Paul Mitchell, Attorney Registration No. 0077327, last known address in Washington, District of Columbia, suspended from the practice of law for an interim period.

On May 1, 2018, the attorney was convicted of a felony leaving the scene of an accident causing personal injury or death in the City of Fredricksburg Circuit Court . He received a suspended sentence of three years and 60 days.

Notably, a District of Columbia attorney was convicted of the exact same offense (Virginia Code section 46.2 - 894) in 2005 and has yet to serve a single day of suspension for a felony hit and run conviction.

We reported on the lawyer-absolving report and recommendation of the Board on Professional Responsibility in August 2015

The report of the District of Columbia Board of Professional Responsibility in the case of Wayne Rohde, Board Docket No. D347-05, has been filed.

You may remember the case - it involves an attorney who drove from the District of Columbia to Virginia after a night of heavy drinking. He struck and seriously injured another motorist, fled the scene but left his car bumper with license plate affixed behind.

He pled guilty and was sentenced in 2005 to felony criminal charges in Virginia.

The D.C. disciplinary system began its processes that same year.

It took seven years for the hearing committee to file a report on the ethics charges. On the plus side, the Board acted faster but to no better result.

Oral argument before the Court of Appeals took place in the Rohde case in October 2016. No decision has yet been forthcoming. 

An attorney convicted of felony hit-and-run in Virginia was suspended in Ohio within two weeks of his conviction.

In the District of Columbia, no sanction has been imposed in the thirteen years since the precise same felony conviction.  (Mike Frisch)


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