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TCL > December 2003 Issue > Summaries of Disciplinary Opinions

December 2003       Vol. 32, No. 12       Page  161
From the Courts
Colorado Disciplinary Cases

Summaries of Disciplinary Opinions

The summaries for the Presiding Disciplinary Judge and hearing board are prepared by the Office of the Presiding Disciplinary Judge. The summaries of the Opinions of the Presiding Disciplinary Judge are provided as a service by the Colorado Bar Association and are not the official language of the Opinion. The Colorado Bar Association cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the summaries.
Unless otherwise noted, full copies of the Opinions follow the summaries pages. The summaries and full-text Opinions are also available on the CBA home page at http://www.cobar.org/tcl/index.htm (see page 179 for details), as well as on Lexis NexisTM at http://www.lexis.com/research, by clicking on States Legal U.S./Colorado/Cases and Court Rules/By Court/Colorado Supreme Court Disciplinary Opinions.

 


Summaries of Decisions Issued by the Presiding Disciplinary Judge

(Through September 29, 2003)

Driscoll v. People, No. 02PDJ031, 9/29/03. Attorney Reinstated.
Robert Justin Driscoll, attorney registration number 05729, was reinstated to the practice of law, effective September 29, 2003. p.163.

 

Summaries of Decisions Regarding Conditional Admissions of Misconduct
Issued by the Presiding Disciplinary Judge
(Through October 14, 2003)

[The Presiding Disciplinary Judge’s approval of Conditional Admissions of Misconduct does not result in a written Opinion but only a brief Order, which does not constitute precedent. Conditional Admissions of Misconduct are public record and are available for review at the Office of the Presiding Disciplinary Judge, 600 17th St., Suite 510-South, Denver, CO 80202; (303) 825-2797. They are also available on LexisNexisTM at http:// www.lexis.com/research by clicking on States Legal U.S./Colorado/Cases and Court Rules/By Court/Colorado Supreme Court Disciplinary Opinions.]

People v. Ankeney, No. 03PDJ015, 9/18/03. Attorney Suspended for Three Years.

The Presiding Disciplinary Judge approved the party’s Amended Conditional Admission of Misconduct and suspended Respondent Randall D. R. Ankeney, attorney registration number 30989, from the practice of law for a period of three years. Respondent pled guilty to attempted sexual assault on a child, a class 5 felony. Respondent’s conduct violated CRS §§ 18-3-405(1) and 18-2-101(1), constituting a violation of Colo. RPC 8.4(b). On January 9, 2003, respondent was sentenced to serve two and one-half years in the Colorado Department of Corrections. Costs of the disciplinary proceedings have been assessed.

People v. Canty, No. 03PDJ078, 10/14/03. Attorney Disbarred.

The Presiding Disciplinary Judge approved the party’s Conditional Admission of Misconduct and disbarred Respondent Patrick J. Canty, attorney registration number 07761, from the practice of law in the state of Colorado. In 1997, respondent drafted a will for a client that contained a testamentary trust to provide for her disabled son upon her death. When the mother died, respondent, as trustee, administered the trust. The trust made no provision for the respondent’s compensation as trustee. During the period that he administered the trust for the son, respondent converted in excess of $50,000 to his own use and benefit. The respondent self-reported his misconduct to the appropriate law enforcement agency. Respondent’s knowing conversion of funds belonging to the trust while acting as trustee amounted to dishonesty, deceit, fraud, or misrepresentation, in violation of Colo. RPC 8.4(c). Respondent was ordered to pay the costs of the disciplinary proceedings.

People v. Frank, No. 03PDJ065, 9/26/03. Sixty-Day Attorney Suspension Stayed Upon Completion of Probation.

The Presiding Disciplinary Judge approved the party’s Conditional Admission of Misconduct and suspended Respondent Robert J. Frank, attorney registration number 19765, from the practice of law for a period of sixty days, all stayed upon successful completion of a twenty-four month period of probation, subject to conditions. Respondent employed an individual as a paralegal and bookkeeper who stole funds from the respondent’s trust account over a nineteen-month period. Respondent failed to adequately supervise his employee, in violation of Colo. RPC 5.3(b); commingled personal funds with trust account funds, in violation of Colo. RPC 1.15(a); and negligently misappropriated a portion of a client’s funds, in violation of Colo. RPC 1.15(a). Respondent was ordered to pay costs of the disciplinary proceedings.

People v. Good, No. 03PDJ067, 9/26/03. Attorney Disbarred.

The Presiding Disciplinary Judge approved the party’s Conditional Admission of Misconduct and disbarred Respondent Niel L. Good, attorney registration number 00458, from the practice of law in the state of Colorado. In two matters involving the same client, respondent violated Colo. RPC 1.5(b) by failing to communicate the basis of his fee in writing. In one of those matters, he neglected the client’s matter, in violation of Colo. RPC 1.3; failed to communicate with the client, in violation of Colo. RPC 1.4(a); and failed to take reasonable steps to protect the client’s interest upon termination, in violation of Colo. RPC 1.16(d). In another matter, respondent failed to provide in writing the basis of his fee, in violation of Colo. RPC 1.5(b); failed to communicate with the client, in violation of Colo. RPC 1.4(a); and made false representations to the client, including his reasons for failing to appear at a sentencing hearing on the client’s behalf and concealing from the client that he was under suspension from the practice of law, which constitute dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation, in violation of Colo. RPC 8.4(c). In another matter, respondent engaged in the unauthorized practice of law while under suspension, in violation of Colo. RPC 5.5(a), contrary to the terms of the order placing him on suspension, in violation of Colo. RPC 3.4(c). In another matter, respondent failed to advise the client that he was under suspension from the practice of law, in violation of Colo. RPC 1.4(b); failed to comply with the order of suspension, in violation of Colo. RPC 3.4(c); and practiced law while under suspension, in violation of Colo. RPC 5.5(a). Respondent was ordered to pay the costs of the disciplinary proceedings.

People v. Marquardt, No. 03PDJ053, 10/9/03. Attorney Suspended.

The Presiding Disciplinary Judge accepted the party’s Conditional Admission of Misconduct and suspended Respondent Robert A. Marquardt, attorney registration number 17902, from the practice of law for a period of one year and one day, with all but sixty days stayed, followed by a one-year period of probation, subject to conditions. Respondent failed to communicate to the client the basis or rate of his fee after commencing representation, in violation of Colo. RPC 1.5(b). As a result, a fee dispute arose, resulting in litigation between respondent and the prior client. In the course of the litigation, on several occasions, respondent communicated directly with the prior client while the prior client was represented by counsel, in violation of Colo. RPC 4.2. In one of the communications to the prior client, respondent threatened to present criminal and/or administrative charges against the prior client and his domestic partner, in violation of Colo. RPC 4.5(a). In respondent’s verified complaint filed against the prior client, respondent alleged that venue was proper in the City and County of Denver, attesting that the prior client resided in Denver. Respondent knew at the time he made the statement that the prior client resided in Panama. Respondent’s knowing submission of false statements in a verified complaint to a tribunal constituted a violation of Colo. RPC 3.3(a)(1) and (4). Respondent was ordered to pay the costs of the disciplinary proceedings.

People v. Salazar, No. 03PDJ003, 10/9/03. Attorney Suspension and Probation.

The Presiding Disciplinary Judge approved the party’s Conditional Admission of Misconduct and suspended Respondent Patricia R. Salazar, attorney registration number 11491, from the practice of law for a period of sixty days, with thirty days stayed, followed by a one-year period of probation subject to conditions. Respondent failed to provide competent legal representation in a child custody matter, in violation of Colo. RPC 1.1, and knowingly assisted a client in violating a court order, in violation of Colo. RPC 1.2(d). Respondent’s conduct resulted in conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice, in violation of Colo. RPC 8.4(d). Respondent was ordered to pay the costs of the disciplinary proceeding.

People v. Simmerman, No. 03PDJ075, 10/14/03. Attorney Disbarred.

The Presiding Officer, William R. Gray, Esq., approved the party’s Conditional Admission of Misconduct and disbarred Respondent Jennifer L. Simmerman from the practice of law in the state of Colorado. Respondent served as the director of the Jefferson County Human Resources Department. An investigation by law enforcement authorities resulted in the filing of criminal charges against the respondent for theft and embezzlement of public property. In July 2003, the respondent entered a guilty plea to theft of property with a value of $15,000 or more (a class 3 felony), in violation of CRS § 18-4-401. Respondent’s conviction of a felony offense constituted a violation of Colo. RPC 8.4(b). Respondent was ordered to pay the costs of the disciplinary proceedings.

 

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