Oklahoma Bar panel rebukes attorney
NEWS 9 and Associated Press
An Oklahoma Bar Association panel has recommended disbarment for Oklahoma City attorney Michael Gassaway. The three-member disciplinary panel found Gassaway violated the rules of professional conduct for attorneys on at least five occasions.
Gassaway had been accused of 15 misconduct allegations, but the panel dismissed eight of those.
"We won a number of battles but we lost the war," said Billy Bock, Gassaway's attorney. "The counts we won were all, most, of the sex allegations."
The only sex allegation the panel did not throw out involves police recordings of Gassaway allegedly willing to trade sexual favors for attorney fees.
The report states Gassaway is guilty of misconduct, including lying and forgery. The ultimate recommendation from the trial panel is disbarment. Mike Gassaway has been down this road before. The veteran attorney has already been disbared once before and has even been to prison twice for tax violations.
"He has been disbared once before, and that's one of the things that also weighted into the decision to recommending disbarment this time--one of the factors," said Irven Box, legal analyst for NEWS 9.
Bill Bock attributes some of Gassaway's trouble with the bar association to his clientele.
"He represents a lot of crazies," said Bock. "He has a higher percentage of having those allegations because of the folks he represents."
Gassaway's professional fate lies in the hands of the Supreme Court of Oklahoma . The supreme court could take the disbarment recommendation and put it into effect or the court could dismiss the recommendation and decide upon a different course of action.
"The chances of them going along with the recommenation of this tribunal are very great," said Box.