IN THE MATTER OF WILLIAM AUGUST BOGE, ESQ.
VSB Docket # 00-053-3052
On May 28, 2002, a hearing in this matter was held before a duly convened Fifth District Committee, Section III, panel consisting of Claiborne T. Richardson, II, Esq., Joyce Ann N. Massey, Esq., Gregory Allen Porter, Esq., Elizabeth M. von Keller, Esq., H. Jan Roltsch-Anoll, Esq., E. Allen Newcomb, Esq., Charles M. Hunter, James G. Moran, Dr. Theodore Smith, and John D. Primeau, Esq., presiding. The Respondent, William August Boge, Esq., did not appear. Seth M. Guggenheim, Assistant Bar Counsel, appeared as counsel for the Virginia State Bar.
Previously, on March 16, 2001, a subcommittee imposed a Private Reprimand with Terms in accordance with an agreed disposition reached between the Respondent and Bar Counsel. Pursuant to Council Rule of Disciplinary Procedure IV (C), this hearing was held to require the Respondent to show cause why the alternative disposition should not be imposed for his failure to comply with the terms imposed by the aforesaid subcommittee determination. Upon evidence and argument presented, the Fifth District Committee, Section III, finds that the Respondent was duly noticed of this hearing by a certified mailing, return receipt requested, to his address of record with the Virginia State Bar, and that he failed to comply with the terms of the subcommittee determination. Accordingly, the Committee hereby issues the following Public Reprimand:
1. At all times relevant hereto, the Respondent, William August Boge, Esq. (hereinafter the Respondent), has been an attorney licensed to practice law in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
2. Commencing in 1998, Respondent acted as co-counsel for Eduardo Gutierrez (hereafter "Complainant") in the defense of criminal charges pending before the Circuit Court for Prince William County, Virginia.
3. On or about November 19, 1998, Complainant was sentenced upon conviction of two criminal charges to ten years of incarceration, with five years suspended, respectively, on each charge, to run consecutively, for a total term of imprisonment of ten years.
4. Respondent promised Complainant that he would file a Motion for Reconsideration of Complainant's sentence with the court. On or about December 4, 1998, Respondent filed such a motion, but the Complainant did not receive a copy at that time, nor did Respondent inform Complainant that such motion was denied by the court. Complainant first learned, in or around August of 2000, and from a source other than Respondent, that such motion had been denied.
5. Despite numerous requests made
directly to Respondent by Complaint, Complainant's other counsel, and the Virginia
State Bar's Intake Office, commencing as early as January 26, 2000, the Respondent
failed to return Complainant's file to him until September 5, 2000. Such requests
were made by telephone, facsimile transmission, and mail on numerous occasions.
6. Respondent failed to respond to the Virginia State Bar's lawful demands for information concerning Complainant's case made in writing on April 21, 2000, May 11, 2000, and June 6, 2000, and he failed to accept and return a Virginia State Bar investigator's telephone calls concerning Complainant's case placed to him on a daily basis on business days for a period of approximately one month.
Such conduct by the Respondent, as set forth above, constitutes Misconduct in violation of the following Disciplinary Rules of the Revised Virginia Code of Professional Responsibility:
DR 6-101. Competence and
(B) A lawyer shall attend promptly
to matters undertaken for a client until completed or until the lawyer has properly
and completely withdrawn from representing the client.
(C) A lawyer shall keep a client reasonably informed about matters in which the lawyer's services are being rendered.
RULE 1.4 Communication
(a) A lawyer shall keep a client reasonably informed about the status of a matter and promptly comply with reasonable requests for information.
RULE 1.16 Declining Or Terminating
(e) All original, client-furnished documents and any originals of legal instruments or official documents which are in the lawyer's possession (wills, corporate minutes, etc.) are the property of the client and shall be returned to the client upon request, whether or not the client has paid the fees and costs owed the lawyer. If the lawyer wants to keep a copy of such original documents, the lawyer must incur the cost of duplication. Upon request, the client must also be provided copies of the following documents from the lawyer's file, whether or not the client has paid the fees and costs owed the lawyer: lawyer/client and lawyer/third-party communications; the lawyer's copies of client-furnished documents (unless the originals have been returned to the client pursuant to this paragraph); pleadings and discovery responses; working and final drafts of legal instruments, official documents, investigative reports, legal memoranda, and other attorney work product documents prepared for the client in the course of the representation; research materials; and bills previously submitted to the client. Although the lawyer may bill and seek to collect from the client the costs associated with making a copy of these materials, the lawyer may not use the client's refusal to pay for such materials as a basis to refuse the client's request. The lawyer, however, is not required under this Rule to provide the client copies of billing records and documents intended only for internal use, such as memoranda prepared by the lawyer discussing conflicts of interest, staffing considerations, or difficulties arising from the lawyer/client relationship.
RULE 8.1 Bar Admission And
An applicant for admission to the
bar, or a lawyer in connection with a bar admission application, in connection
with any certification required to be filed as a condition of maintaining or
renewing a license to practice law, in connection with a disciplinary matter,
(c) fail to respond to a lawful
demand for information from an admissions or disciplinary authority, except
that this Rule does not require disclosure of information otherwise protected
by Rule 1.6; or
(d) obstruct a lawful investigation by an admissions or disciplinary authority.
Accordingly, it is the decision of the Committee to impose a Public Reprimand and the Respondent is hereby so reprimanded.
Pursuant to Part Six, ßIV, 13(K)(10) of the Rules of the Supreme Court, the Clerk of the Disciplinary System shall assess costs.
FIFTH DISTRICT COMMITTEE SECTION III
OF THE VIRGINIA STATE BAR
John D. Primeau, Chair Designate
I certify that I have this ______ day of __________________________, 2002, mailed by CERTIFIED MAIL, RETURN RECEIPT REQUESTED, a true and correct copy of the District Committee Determination (Public Reprimand) to William August Boge, Esq., the Respondent, at 9315 Center St., Suite 103, Manassas, VA 20110, his address of record with the Virginia State Bar, and by first class mail, postage prepaid, to Seth M. Guggenheim, Esq., Assistant Bar Counsel at 100 North Pitt Street, Suite 310, Alexandria, Virginia 22314.
John D. Primeau, Chair Desginate