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The following attorneys have been reinstated to the practice of law after complying with Supreme Court Rule 21, which requires mandatory continuing legal education: Dina Guirguis, Arlington, Va.; Owen Patrick Lalor, Ridgeland, Miss.
The following attorneys have been reinstated to the practice of law after complying with Section 20 of Supreme Court Rule 9, which requires the payment of annual registration fees: John Bacon Brown, Bowling Green, Ky.; Robert Louis Booker, Oceanside, Calif.; Michael Victor Coleman, Atlanta, Ga.; Stephen M. Crampton, Lynchburg, Va.; Jan Holmes Crosby, Colorado Springs, Colo.; James Edward Mullikin, Nacogdoches, Texas
Chattanooga attorney Shadrach Jerome Hale II was suspended on May 27 for failure to pay the 2008 BPR fee. The Board of Professional Responsibility has since determined that Hale died April 26. The suspension has been removed from his record.
Suspension is effective 10 days after issuance, except where immediate suspension is necessary to protect the public. A suspended lawyer may not accept new clients but may continue representing current clients for 30 days. The lawyer must notify all clients, co-counsel and opposing counsel of the suspension order; return to clients any papers or property to which they are entitled; not use the indicia of lawyer, legal assistant or law clerk; and not maintain a presence where the practice of law is conducted. An attorney suspended for one year or more must prove by clear and convincing evidence that he has the moral qualifications, competency and learning required for admission to the practice of law, and that resumption of his practice would not be detrimental to the integrity and standing of the bar or the administration of justice, nor be subversive to the public interest. An attorney suspended for less than one year with conditions may resume practice after complying with those conditions. An attorney suspended for less than one year with no conditions may resume practice without reinstatement.
On Aug. 6, the Tennessee Supreme Court summarily and temporarily suspended Memphis lawyer Tony N. Brayton from the practice of law. The court found that Brayton failed to respond to the Board of Professional Responsibility about a misconduct complaint filed against him. The suspension remains in effect until dissolution or modification by the Supreme Court.
On Aug. 13, the Supreme Court suspended the law license of Knox County lawyer James M. Webster for six months and ordered him to pay restitution to three former clients in the amount of $3,250. The Board of Professional Responsibility filed a petition for discipline against Webster for neglecting clients' cases; failing to communicate with clients; and practicing law while suspended for noncompliance with continuing legal education requirements. Webster failed to respond to the board regarding the complaint. Therefore it was deemed admitted that he violated the Rules of Professional Conduct on all three counts, and a suspension was imposed.
Rule 9 Suspensions
The following attorneys were suspended by the Supreme Court of Tennessee for failure to pay the 2008 annual registration fee as required by Rule 9, section 20 of the Rules of the Tennessee Supreme Court. Attorneys who have since complied with the rule are noted as reinstated. The court has adopted a new process this year; instead of suspending in one order all lawyers who have not paid their fees, it is filing multiple suspension orders for smaller groups of lawyers. Orders have been issued on May 27, May 30, July 14 and July 21. Additional suspensions, if any, will be announced as they become available.
Brentwood: Pamela Gayle Browne. Bristol: Suzanne Shackelford Queen. Cleveland: Frank L. Mullinax. Jackson: Jacques Baer Glassman. Kingsport: Richard Daniel Winegar. Maryville: Stephen Paul Gilmore. Memphis: James Marion Allen, Scott Cameron Cummins (reinstated), Marti Lee Kauffman, Dee Shawn Peoples (reinstated), George Cornibe Wallace. Nashville: Kenneth Edwin Douthat, James Robert III Everett, Tracey A. Kinslow (reinstated), Kenneth Mainland Larish, Keltie Hays Peay (reinstated; relocated to North Carolina), Charles Edwin Reed (reinstated), John Carlyle Shelton, Gloria Lynn Williams. Russelville: Wesley Markland Baker (reinstated). Seymour: Kenneth K. Kennedy. Shelbyville: Cara Elyzabeth Gruszecki-Smalley. Signal Mountain: Arthur David Wulforst. Thompson's Station: Bryan Douglas Foriest.
Out of State
Arizona: Roy Lee Steers Jr. Arkansas: Amy Catherine Martin, John Deloy Thomas Jr. California: Bum Lee, Ja Kyong Suh (reinstated), James L. Rather Rather (reinstated). Colorado: Mark Kevin Paitsel. Florida: Rebecca Carole Davis. Kentucky: Michael Bernard Brown. Maryland: Teresa Annette Scott (reinstated). Mississippi: Robert Bellarmine Gaia, Clay Spencer Nails (reinstated). New Jersey: Heidi Louise Simmons. Texas: LaShundra LaTrice Davis-Culpepper, Arienne Paige Brint Lebow (has paid BPR fee but remains suspended for CLE noncompliance).
In Tennessee, disbarment becomes effective 10 days after an order of the court. Under the Rules of Professional Conduct, a disbarred lawyer must notify all clients, co-counsel and opposing counsel of the disbarment; must deliver to all clients any papers or property to which they are entitled; may not use the indicia of lawyer, counselor at law, legal assistant, law clerk or similar title; and may not maintain a presence or occupy an office where the practice of law is conducted. A lawyer who has been disbarred after hearing or by consent may not apply for reinstatement for at least five years. When applying, the lawyer must prove by clear and convincing evidence that reinstatement would not be detrimental to the integrity and standing of the bar or the administration of justice, nor be subversive to the public interest.
The Tennessee Supreme Court disbarred Dresden lawyer Harry Max Speight on Aug. 14 for misappropriating more than $1 million of client funds and continuing to practice law while suspended. The court suspended Speight on Nov. 30, 2006, while it investigated complaints of mishandled client funds. In addition to finding that he indeed misappropriated money, the court determined that he continued to practice law after being suspended. On April 18, Speight consented to disbarment.
Compiled by Stacey Shrader from information obtained from the Board of Professional Responsibility of the Tennessee Supreme Court.