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In re Yelverton

Court of Appeals of Columbia District

December 24, 2014

IN RE STEPHEN T. YELVERTON, Respondent

Argued: March 11, 2014.

Page 414

[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

Page 415

A Suspended Member of the Bar of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. (Bar Registration No. 264044).

Stephen T. Yelverton, Pro se.

Hamilton P. Fox, III, Assistant Bar Counsel, with whom Wallace E. Shipp, Jr., Bar Counsel, and Jennifer P. Lyman, Senior Assistant Bar Counsel, were on the brief, for the Office of Bar Counsel.

Before FISHER and BECKWITH, Associate Judges, and RUIZ, Senior Judge.

OPINION

Page 416

RUIZ, Senior Judge.

This case requires us to consider whether and how to sanction an attorney for a pattern of repetitive frivolous filings. Before us is a recommendation from the Board on Professional Responsibility (" Board" ) that we find that respondent Stephen T. Yelverton violated Rules of Professional Conduct 1.1 (a), 1.1 (b), 3.1, and 8.4 (d) in his representation of a witness in a criminal trial. The Board recommends a ninety-day suspension and imposition of a fitness requirement as a condition of reinstatement. We conclude that respondent's actions did not violate Rules 1.1 (a) or (b), which require professional competence in the representation of clients, as there was no harm to the client. However, we agree with the Board's determination that respondent violated Rules 3.1 and 8.4 (d), which forbid attorneys from making submissions

Page 417

to the court that are not well-grounded in law and fact, and engaging in conduct that seriously interferes with the administration of justice. We do not adopt the Board's recommendation that respondent be suspended for ninety days, and instead order a thirty-day suspension. We also add a requirement, as recommended by the Board, that ...


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