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Legal Ethics

2 Okla. Lawyers Temporarily Suspended After Taking Alford Pleas in Police Misdemeanor Case

Posted Apr 20, 2012 12:35 PM CDT
By Martha Neil

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Two Oklahoma City lawyers have been temporarily suspended from practice after taking Alford pleas earlier this month in a misdemeanor case involving alleged obstruction of a police officer.

Robert Samuel Kerr IV, 33, and Josh T. Welch, 43, each paid a $500 fine and received two years of probation. Under the plea, they accepted responsibility for the crime but denied guilt, the Oklahoman reports.

A third lawyer from Oklahoma City, David Ogle, 44, is accused in an ongoing case of bribing an Edmond police officer, the article says.

In its brief opinions Thursday on Kerr and Welch, the supreme court explains that the suspension was imposed under Rule 7.3 of the Rules Governing Disciplinary Proceedings, which requires that "Upon receipt of the certified copies of judgment and sentence on a plea of guilty, order deferring judgment and sentence, indictment or information and the judgment and sentence, the supreme court shall by order immediately suspend the lawyer from the practice of law until further order of the court."

Earlier News 9 and Associated Press articles discuss the case against the three attorneys.

All once worked at the same law firm, Ogle & Welch, and were accused of acting in concert to pay a police officer not to appear at a driver's license revocation hearing for a client. The officer reportedly played along and disclosed the incident to a superior.

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