When I protested earlier to the Indiana Supreme Court that the Disciplinary Commission deliberately ran up an expense bill on me to force me out of practicing law, I don't think the justices believed me. So I decided to undergo the painstaking process of going through the docket of each disciplinary case over the last two years to determine how much in expenses each disciplined attorney was ordered to pay . . .
Upon completion of my survey, it turns out my instincts were right. The Commission ran up more expenses prosecuting me for an email than any other attorney . . .
Nonetheless, the Indiana Supreme Court refused to reconsider the expense bill (and didn't require an itemization) leaving me with no choice but to walk away from practicing law. On Wednesday I filed paperwork to put my license in "inactive" status.
So I, an attorney who had never been disciplined in my over 26 years of practicing law, lost my right to practice law in the State of Indiana because I sent a private email criticizing a judge in which I accidentally got a couple minor facts wrong. (Never mind NY Times v. Sullivan which says my speech was protected by the First Amendment.) My hope is that my case FINALLY causes the Indiana Supreme Court to take some responsibility for the too often outrageous conduct of the Disciplinary Commission, which is an arm of the Court, and adopt long needed reforms in how the Commission operates, including more transparency and accountability. Indiana attorneys and the public deserve better.Seriously, Paul Ogden received a larger fine than criminal defendants whose actions result in the death of other people in this state receive. This same Disciplinary Commission refused to do anything to a prominent criminal defense attorney who facilitated the payment of a bribe by her client's father to a prosecutor so her client could be sprung from prison early from her sentence for hiring a hit man to murder her husband. The Disciplinary Commission ignored pleas by former legal associates of a prominent attorney who was stealing millions from his client's funds for years before it was too late to help the victims. Hell, the Indiana Supreme Court has even allowed people who've driven drunk and killed other persons to practice law and become judges in this state. Yet Paul Ogden is the greater threat to the general public because he spoke his mind in a private e-mail about the actions of a neglectful judge. Then they wonder why people have so little respect for the legal system. Welcome to Nazi Germany.