Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Disciplinary Counsel v. Bruce

Supreme Court of Ohio

January 16, 2020

Disciplinary Counsel
v.
Bruce.

          Submitted September 11, 2019

          ON CERTIFIED REPORT by the Board of Professional Conduct of the Supreme Court, No. 2018-071.

          Joseph M. Caligiuri, Disciplinary Counsel, and Donald M. Scheetz, Assistant Disciplinary Counsel, for relator.

          Coughlan Law Firm, L.L.C., and Jonathan Edward Coughlan, for respondent.

          PER CURIAM.

         {¶ 1} Respondent, Matthew Gilbert Bruce, of West Chester, Ohio, Attorney Registration No. 0083769, was admitted to the practice of law in Ohio in 2008.

         {¶ 2} In a formal complaint filed with the Board of Professional Conduct on December 27, 2018, relator, disciplinary counsel, charged Bruce with four violations of the Rules of Professional Conduct relating to his attempts to collect money owed to him pursuant to a residential lease agreement.

         {¶ 3} The parties entered into stipulations of fact, misconduct, and aggravating and mitigating factors.

         {¶ 4} A panel of the board conducted a hearing and issued a report finding that Bruce committed the stipulated violations and recommending that he be suspended from the practice of law for one year, fully stayed on the condition that he engage in no further misconduct. The board adopted the panel's report and recommendation, and no objections have been filed.

         {¶ 5} We adopt the board's findings of misconduct and agree that a conditionally stayed one-year suspension is the appropriate sanction for Bruce's misconduct.

         Misconduct

         {¶ 6} On November 30, 2012, Bruce entered into an agreement with Laura and Greg Zetts to lease a residential property Bruce owned in Medina, Ohio. The lease agreement included an option to purchase the property, and Bruce entered into a purchase agreement with the Zettses on March 31, 2017. The Zettses purchased the property on May 31, 2017.

         {¶ 7} In the meantime, Bruce had not received rent payments from the Zettses for April and May 2017. Although the Zettses had issued five checks to Bruce to pay the rent due, each of those checks was returned for insufficient funds.

         {¶ 8} Following the sale of the property, Bruce began to e-mail and call the Zettses regarding their outstanding rent payments. On June 12, 2017, having received no response, Bruce sent Laura an e-mail to inform her that he would file a civil action against her if he did not receive payment by June 19. The e-mail further stated: "As I'm sure you are aware, under Ohio law, it is a felony to pass bad checks in the amount you have bounced in my accounts over the last six months. * * * [Y]ou have failed to deposit good funds to ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.