News Roundup

Afternoon Briefs: NYC bar calls for Barr's Ukraine recusal; law school renamed after donor

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William Barr

U.S. Attorney General William Barr. Photo from the U.S. Department of Justice.

U.S. attorney general should recuse himself in Ukraine matters, bar group says

The New York City Bar Association is calling on Attorney General William Barr to recuse himself from any Justice Department review of Ukraine-related issues in which he was allegedly involved. If Barr refuses to recuse in the future, the bar said in a statement, “he should resign or, failing that, be subject to sanctions, including possible removal, by Congress.” The bar group says recusal is warranted because of the July phone call in which President Donald Trump said he would ask Barr to call the Ukrainian president in connection with Trump’s request that the country investigate Joe Biden and his son. The Justice Department has said Trump did not speak with him about Biden and Ukraine, and he didn’t communicate with Ukraine on any matter. (New York City Bar statement, the New York Law Journal)

Jurors acquit defendant who admitted punching his lawyer

Jurors in Cleveland have acquitted a defendant who admitted punching his lawyer during a February court hearing because he was upset over his 47-year sentence. David Chislton was acquitted on a charge of felonious assault after his lawyer argued the lawyer’s injuries didn’t rise to the level of serious physical harm that supported a felonious assault charge. “David Chislton doesn’t pack much of a punch,” his lawyer told jurors. The injured lawyer, Aaron Brockler, suffered two hairline fractures to his nose and a sprained knee ligament. The attack was captured on a deputy’s body cam. (

Pepperdine renames law school after $50M gift

Pepperdine University is renaming its law school after receiving a $50 million gift from Los Angeles developer Rick Caruso and his wife, Tina. Rick Caruso will also partner with the school to raise an additional $50 million. The money will be used to fund student scholarships, expand a loan-forgiveness program and strengthen academic programs. The school will now be called the Rick J. Caruso School of Law. The donation appears to be among the five largest law school gifts in history. (Pepperdine press release, the Recorder)

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