BEFORE THE NINTH DISTRICT COMMITTEE
OF THE VIRGINIA STATE BAR
IN THE MATTER OF VSB Docket No. 03-090-2433
PERRY HENRY HARROLD
DISTRICT COMMITTEE DETERMINATION
(DISMISSAL WITH TERMS)
On October 17, 2003, a hearing in this matter was held before a duly convened Ninth District Committee panel with Kimberly Slayton White, Esquire, Chair presiding, Charles G. Butts, Esquire, Paul J. Feinman, Esquire, Philip D. Payne, Esquire, Langhorne S. Mauck, lay member, and Theodore Bruning, Jr., lay member.
Pursuant to Virginia Supreme Court Rules of Court Part Six, Section IV, Paragraph 13(B)(7), the Ninth District Committee of the Virginia State Bar hereby serves upon the Respondent, Perry Henry Harrold, the following Dismissal with Terms.
I. FINDINGS OF FACT
1. At all times relevant to this matter, Respondent was an attorney licensed to practice law in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
2. On September 22, 1999, Respondent was appointed to represent Complainant James F. Clower (ýComplainantţ) on all appeals relating to a criminal conviction.
3. Respondent copied Complainant on a letter dated September 20, 1999 ordering the trial transcript for the purpose of preparing the appeal to the Virginia Court of Appeals.
4. Thereafter, Respondent did not telephone or write to the Complainant until March 5, 2003.
5. In the interim, the Court of Appeals issued a March 23, 2000 Order denying the appeal, a three judge panel of the Court of Appeals issued a June 22, 2000 Order denying the appeal, and the Virginia Supreme Court refused a Petition for Appeal on November 8, 2000. Respondent did not inform Complainant of any of these decisions until March 5, 2003, after receipt of a letter inquiry from Complainant and the bar complaint.
II. NATURE OF MISCONDUCT
Such conduct on the part of Respondent constitutes misconduct in violation of the following Rule of Professional Conduct:
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.
III. IMPOSITION OF DISMISSAL WITH TERMS
Accordingly, it is the decision of the Committee to offer the Respondent an opportunity to comply with certain terms and conditions, compliance with which will be a predicate for the disposition of this complaint by a Dismissal with Terms. The following terms shall be met within six (6) months of the date of the hearing (by April 17, 2004):
1. Respondent shall consult with Virginia State Bar Risk Manager John Brandt, Esquire regarding communicating with clients, particularly incarcerated clients, and shall report in writing to Assistant Bar Counsel Kathryn A. Ramey or her designee, the date and nature of the consultation and any new procedures implemented by Respondent to facilitate his communication with clients; and
2. Respondent shall take two (2) hours of Continuing Legal Education in Ethics that shall not count towards his Mandatory Continuing Legal Education requirement and shall certify in writing to Assistant Bar Counsel Kathryn A. Ramey or her designee, that he has taken the courses and the name, date and location of the courses.
Upon written proof that these terms have been satisfied, the Respondent shall be given a Dismissal with Terms and this matter shall be closed. If, however, Respondent fails to meet these terms within the time specified, the Ninth District Committee shall impose upon a Public Reprimand as an alternative sanction.
Pursuant to Virginia Supreme Court Rules of Court Part Six, Section IV, Paragraph 13(B)(8)(c), the Clerk of the Disciplinary System shall assess costs.
Ninth District Committee
Of the Virginia State Bar
Kimberly Slayton White, Esquire
Chair of the Ninth District Committee
CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE
I certify I have this the ____ day of ____________, 2003, mailed by CERTIFIED MAIL, RETURN RECEIPT REQUESTED, a true and complete copy of the District Committee Determination (Dismissal with Terms) to Perry Henry Harrold, Esquire, at his last address of record with the Virginia State Bar, 68 West Main Street, P.O. Box 1282 Martinsville, VA 24114-1282, and to RespondentÝs Counsel, Michael L. Rigbsy, Esquire at Carrell Rice & Rigsby, Forest Plaza II, Suite 309, 7275 Glen Forest Drive, Richmond, VA 23226.
Kathryn A. Ramey