The Colorado Lawyer
Vol. 42, No. 9 [Page 99]
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From the Courts
Colorado Disciplinary Cases
Disciplinary Case Summaries
The summaries of disciplinary case Opinions and Conditional Admissions of Misconduct are prepared by the Office of the Presiding Disciplinary Judge (PDJ) and are provided as a service by the Colorado Bar Association (CBA). The CBA cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the summaries. The full text of the disciplinary Opinions, when published by the PDJ, follows the summaries page(s). The summaries and full-text Opinions also are accessible from the CBA website: www.cobar.org (click on "Opinions/Rules/Statutes"). Opinions, including exhibits, complaints, amended complaints, and summaries, also are available at the PDJ website, www.coloradosupremecourt.com/PDJ/pdj.htm, and on LexisNexis.®
Summary of Decision Issued by the PDJ
No. 13PDJ007. People v. Webb. No. 07/13/2013. Attorney Disbarred.
The PDJ disbarred Glenn L. Webb, attorney registration number 20023. The suspension was effective July 18, 2013.
Webb, an intellectual property attorney, neglected a client’s case causing ten patent applications to be deemed abandoned. In a second client matter, Webb neglected a client’s trademark registration case, failed to adequately communicate with the client, converted a trademark application filing fee, and produced a false filing fee receipt. In a third client matter, Webb again failed to exercise reasonable diligence, produced a false receipt, and converted a patent fee. With regard to all three matters, Webb did not respond to the Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel’s requests for information. His misconduct constituted grounds for the imposition of discipline pursuant to CRCP 251.5, and violated Colo. RPC 1.1, 1.3, 1.4(a)(3), 1.16(d), 8.1(b), and 8.4(c).
Summaries of Decisions Regarding
Conditional Admission of Misconduct Issued by the PDJ
The PDJ’s approval of a Conditional Admission 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 PDJ, 1560 Broadway, Ste. 675, Denver, CO 80202; (303) 866-6658; www.coloradosupremecourt.com/PDJ/pdj.htm. They also are available on LexisNexis.®
No. 13PDJ050. People v. Beale. 06/24/2013. Attorney Suspended.
The PDJ approved a conditional admission of misconduct submitted by the parties and suspended David William Beale, attorney registration number 19097, from the practice of law for two years. The suspension was effective June 24, 2013.
On October 1, 2010, Beale pleaded guilty to violating a protective order in Maryland and was sentenced to ninety days in prison and twelve months of probation. On December 2, 2011, Beale pleaded guilty to second-degree assault in Maryland and received a three-year suspended sentence and two years of probation. Beale failed to report either conviction to Colorado regulatory authorities. On May 9, 2013, Beale pleaded guilty to felony menacing in Colorado and received twelve months of probation. Beale’s misconduct constituted grounds for the imposition of discipline pursuant to CRCP 251.5(a), (b), and (c), and violated Colo. RPC 3.4(c) and 8.4(b).
No. 13PDJ051. People v. Mathews. 06/24/2013. Attorney Disbarred.
The PDJ approved a conditional admission of misconduct submitted by the parties and disbarred Walter Mathews IV, attorney registration number 31109, from the practice of law. The disbarment was effective June 24, 2013.
In 2012, Mathews, while employed as general counsel for a rural transportation authority, took between $500 and $20,000 from his employer. On May 28, 2013, Mathews pleaded guilty to felony and misdemeanor theft. Mathews has paid his employer $32,000 in restitution. His misconduct constituted grounds for the imposition of discipline pursuant to CRCP 251.5, and violated Colo. RPC 8.4(b) and (c).
No. 13PDJ053. People v. Reid. 07/01/2013. Attorney Suspended.
The PDJ approved a conditional admission of misconduct submitted by the parties and suspended Karen A. Reid, attorney registration number 33999, from the practice of law for six months. The suspension was effective July 1, 2013, with the requirement of reinstatement pursuant to CRCP 251.29(c).
Reid worked as an independent contractor for the Office of the Child Representative (OCR) before being removed from its eligibility list in July 2011. Although she was assigned no new cases thereafter, Reid continued to work on cases she previously had been assigned. A routine audit uncovered that Reid had been paid approximately $128,648.50 for eight months of work as a result of billing more than ten hours of work per day and consistently billing 108 minutes for home visits. During OCR’s audit, Reid explained that she had destroyed all of her relevant notes, e-mails, and calendars, even though she was required to maintain these records by a Chief Justice Directive. After her contract was terminated, Reid was dishonest with the Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel (OARC) regarding the existence of relevant information. When OARC analyzed forty-five hearings in which Reid participated, it discovered that Reid overbilled both hearing and wait times by more than 1,200 minutes. Reid’s misconduct constituted grounds for the imposition of discipline pursuant to CRCP 251.5, and violated Colo. RPC 1.1, 1.5(a), 3.4(c), 4.1, and 8.4(c).
No. 13PDJ042. People v. Shoemaker. 06/24/2013. Attorney Suspended.
The PDJ approved a conditional admission of misconduct submitted by the parties and suspended Joseph Jay Shoemaker, attorney registration number 15426, from the practice of law for one year and one day. The suspension was effective July 29, 2013.
Shoemaker was hired to draft a will for a client. The will appointed Shoemaker the personal representative and trustee of a trust benefitting the client’s two daughters, and it provided for reasonable compensation for Shoemaker’s services. The client passed away in 2010, leaving a life insurance policy naming the client’s two daughters as joint beneficiaries. Shoemaker assisted the daughters in setting up separate bank accounts for the life insurance benefits and made himself the joint account holder on both accounts. Shoemaker later removed his name from one account but continued as a joint account holder on the other. In 2011, Shoemaker made two transfers to his personal retirement account from the joint bank account for $16,500 and $10,500, respectively. He did not notify the account holder of the transfers, nor did he provide an accounting of his fees. Shoemaker returned all of the funds two months later, when asked to do so. He was eventually removed as personal representative and trustee. Shoemaker’s misconduct constituted grounds for the imposition of discipline pursuant to CRCP 251.5, and violated Colo. RPC 1.5(a), 1.15(a) and (b), 3.4(c), and 8.4(c).
No. 13PDJ052. People v. Wilson. 06/28/2013. Attorney Suspended.
The PDJ approved a conditional admission of misconduct submitted by the parties and suspended Madeline Elizabeth Wilson, attorney registration number 24060, from the practice of law for ninety days, all stayed pending the successful completion of a two-year period of probation, with conditions. The suspension was effective June 28, 2013.
Wilson filed a petition for legal separation in Colorado on behalf of her daughter, who resided in Alabama with her spouse and two children. In the petition, Wilson stated that her daughter had been domiciled in Colorado for fifteen years and listed a Denver address as her current address. The petition also listed Colorado as the father’s home state. At the time Wilson filed the petition, neither Wilson’s daughter nor her husband had been domiciled in Colorado for ninety days, as required by Colorado law. In addition, Colorado courts lacked jurisdiction over the matter because Colorado was not the home state of Wilson’s two grandchildren. The petition was dismissed for lack of personal and subject matter jurisdiction. Wilson’s misconduct constituted grounds for the imposition of discipline pursuant to CRCP 251.5, and violated Colo. RPC 1.7 and 8.4(d).
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