Legal Ethics

Lawyer is suspended in third state after police standoff


A third state has temporarily suspended a West Virginia lawyer accused of firing his gun during a standoff with police.

Kentucky temporarily suspended lawyer Mark Bramble on Aug. 22, acting on a petition for reciprocal discipline, report the Legal Profession Blog, WSAZ and the Charleston Daily Mail. Bramble had resigned as a lawyer in the workers’ compensation division of the state attorney general’s office shortly before the shooting incident last August.

Bramble shot and wounded himself during the Aug. 12, 2013, standoff. He was allegedly hallucinating when he pointed a gun at his wife, who escaped and called police, according to the Kentucky order (PDF). He was also accused of firing at police when they responded.

The petition noted the temporary suspension doesn’t have the same effect as a suspension based on a final finding of misconduct. “That is the better outcome because Bramble’s disability may pass,” the opinion said, “he may be acquitted of the criminal charges against him, and he may ultimately be found not to have committed any misconduct.” Bramble was also suspended in West Virginia and Ohio.

The criminal case has already concluded. A judge in Kanawha County, West Virginia, dismissed charges of attempted murder and wanton endangerment against Bramble last month based on evidence he was suffering from delirium caused by Unisom. The prosecutor did not object.

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