Lawyer convicted for chest bumping a prosecutor wins reinstatement to law practice

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The Louisiana Supreme Court reinstated a lawyer Tuesday who had been suspended for a year and a day for chest bumping a prosecutor in a judge’s chambers.

The state supreme court reinstated Baton Rouge lawyer Felix Anthony DeJean IV in a per curiam opinion, the Advocate reports. The opinion said DeJean had complied with reinstatement criteria.

Concurring Justice Scott Crichton said DeJean had attended counseling, acknowledged his wrongdoing, and recognized the seriousness of his actions. He presented character witnesses who told of his good character and self-improvement.

DeJean had been convicted of simple battery for the March 2015 incident. District Attorney Bradley Burget of Concordia Parish had claimed that DeJean exchanged words with him, physically confronted him and chest bumped him. DeJean received a suspended jail sentence in the criminal case along with 18 months of supervised probation that required him to complete an anger management program.

In imposing the suspension in January 2019, the Louisiana Supreme Court said DeJean’s conduct “caused no actual physical harm,” but “it did impair the public reputation of the profession and the judicial system.”

DeJean told the Advocate that he was “back and ready to help seek justice on behalf of my clients.” He also said he was “grateful to the supreme court and thankful to all the people who have supported me through a very difficult time.”

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