George C. Young American Inn of Court addresses ethical challenges
THE GEORGE C. YOUNG AMERICAN INN OF COURT recently held its monthly dinner meeting where Pupilage Group One presented a program addressing ethical challenges for lawyers and judges. Pupillage Group One is made up of Benchers (Judge Thomas Sculco, Judge Kevin Weiss, and Judge Lisa Munyon), Masters (Frederick Barnes, Kathleen Davies, Clay Morris, and Drew Sorrell.), Barristers (Jared Brooks, Taira Towne, and Dave Varet.), and Associates (Anamaria Taitt, and Jeanna Winchester). The presentation consisted of detailed factual scenarios involving ethical challenges lawyers and judges may face, and the audience was invited to participate and provide input on lawyers’ and judges’ appropriate responses to the challenges and possible resulting dilemmas. Judge LaBlanc walked around the room to allow attendees to voice their opinions and ask questions during the presentation. The scenarios included: • A criminal defense attorney arrives at the first day of his client’s trial and learns that the star witness is missing. The client tells his attorney that “he took care of it.” What are the criminal defense attorney’s obligations to the court and his client? • A judge presides over a hearing involving a pro se party who did not understand that the hearing was noticed as an evidentiary hearing and brought no evidence or witnesses. Does the judge reset the hearing or proceed?