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OLR wants to suspend former Milwaukee County court commissioner (UPDATE)

By: Eric Heisig//December 27, 2013

OLR wants to suspend former Milwaukee County court commissioner (UPDATE)

By: Eric Heisig//December 27, 2013

A fired Milwaukee County court commissioner who was convicted of filing false tax documents is now facing a suspension of her law license.

Geneva McKinley, who was appointed as a commissioner in 2007, pleaded no contest in May to two misdemeanor counts of filing false tax documents for underreporting her income by more than $100,000 in 2006 and 2007, and therefore underpaying her taxes by nearly $33,000.

Following McKinley’s plea, Dane County Circuit Judge Julie Genovese withheld sentence and ordered McKinley to serve 18 months on probation. McKinley was subsequently terminated as a Milwaukee court commissioner.

The Office of Lawyer Regulation filed its complaint against McKinley on Dec. 6 as a result of her convictions. It is asking the state Supreme Court to suspend McKinley – who was admitted to the State Bar in 1996 – for 60 days.

The three-page complaint states that McKinley reported the conviction to the OLR in a timely manner.

McKinley could not immediately be reached for comment Friday. The State Bar’s website still lists her office’s address at the Milwaukee County Courthouse.

Her attorney, Dean Strang of Hurley, Burish & Stanton SC in Madison, said he was not representing McKinley in the OLR case.

According to a criminal complaint, McKinley filed income tax returns for the 2006 and 2007 tax years on the same date — May 28, 2008.

She failed to report rental income she received each year on commercial real estate property she owned, the complaint states, and also failed to report attorney’s fees she was paid for private legal work in 2006, prior to becoming a court commissioner.

For the two years combined, McKinley reported only $19,391 in adjusted gross income, when her actual adjusted gross income should have been reported as more than $135,000.

Genovese also ordered McKinley to serve five days in jail as a condition of probation, though McKinley can petition to have her probation end after one year if she attends a required number of counseling sessions.

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