Archive for Saturday, February 26, 2005

Court reinstates Lawrence attorney

Defense lawyer James Rumsey was suspended July ‘03

February 26, 2005


The Kansas Supreme Court on Friday announced it had reinstated a Lawrence attorney whom it had called a 'loose cannon' and suspended from law practice in July 2003.

A state panel recommended that, as a condition of James Rumsey's reinstatement, he continue an anger-management program begun around the time he was disciplined. But the court decided not to make the program a condition of reinstatement.

Rumsey, a well-known defense attorney and former candidate for district attorney, was suspended for one year July 2003 for ethical violations stemming from the way he treated clients in a divorce and an on-the-job injury case from the late 1990s.

The court accepted recommendations of an investigator who found Rumsey "alternately ignores and then pushes around his clients, commingles clients' funds with his own, and fails to advise clients when he has terminated his representation of them."

Rumsey told the court that at the time of the cases in question, his wife was undergoing chemotherapy treatments. He also said that many clients had benefited from his work as a criminal defense attorney.

Rumsey petitioned for reinstatement in July 2004 and had a hearing in November 2004. The court ordered reinstatement Tuesday and released its decision Friday.

Rumsey could not be reached for comment.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.