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Neenah attorney faces 6-month license suspension

A Neenah attorney faces a 6-month license suspension for jumping bail, a felony conviction and practicing law while his license was suspended.

The Office of Lawyer Regulation on Dec. 27 charged the solo-practitioner David Templeton with three counts of misconduct. The OLR alleges that Templeton’s conduct leading up to a felony conviction in May amount to a violation of the state’s attorney-ethics rules.

In June 2017, a Fox Crossing Police Department investigator told the OLR that Templeton was under investigation. Templeton was arrested in August 2017.

He was later charged with a felony count of delivering heroin. He was released on bail, under the condition that he remain sober and commit no criminal acts. However, about a week later, he caused a disturbance at his apartment complex while he was intoxicated and was charged with two counts of bail jumping and one count of disorderly conduct.

In March, Templeton pleaded no contest to a felony count of delivering heroin and a single count of bail jumping. The remaining charges were dismissed and read in to the record. A judge in May sentenced him to five years of probation. If that probation were revoked, he would now have to spend two years in prison and three years under extended supervision.

The remaining allegations of misconduct involve a suspension of Templeton’s license that began in May 2017, when he failed to report completing continuing-legal-education requirements. The OLR alleges Templeton failed to tell his clients and opposing counsel that his license had been suspended and that Templeton practiced law during the suspension, such as by appearing in Winnebago County Circuit Court on the behalf of a client in June 2017, according to the OLR’s complaint.

The OLR is asking the Wisconsin Supreme Court to suspend Templeton’s license for 6 months, meaning that in order to get his license reinstated, he will have to present evidence at a hearing showing that he is fit to practice law again.

The OLR is also asking the court to require Templeton, before he petitions the court for reinstatement, to undergo a substance-abuse assessment and furnish to the OLR signed medical releases for entities that provided him with any kind of substance-abuse treatment in the last three years.

Once he is served the complaint, Templeton has 20 days to respond. Although the court may appoint a referee to preside over the case, the Wisconsin Supreme Court will have the final say on what happens.

Templeton, who earned his law degree from the Michigan State University College of Law in 2002, has been licensed to practice law in Wisconsin since 2004.

About Erika Strebel, [email protected]

Erika Strebel is the law beat reporter for the Wisconsin Law Journal and a law school student at UW-Madison. She can be reached at 414-225-1825.

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