Baton Rouge attorney and former governor's office counsel Joshua Paul Melder has agreed to his own partially deferred suspension following a Jan. 9 Louisiana Supreme Court attorney disciplinary proceeding after his arrest on domestic abuse battery and resisting an officer charges.
The high court handed down a year and a day suspension, with half of it deferred, and placed Melder on five years' probation and ordered him to complete a lawyers assistance program recovery agreement, according to the single-page attorney disciplinary proceeding. Melder also was ordered to pay all costs and expenses in the matter.
The attorney disciplinary proceeding did not provide details about the domestic abuse battery and resisting an office charges against Melder, except that he was "arrested and booked".
Before the state's office of disciplinary counsel filing of formal charges, Melder reached an agreement with the office for a joint petition for consent discipline in which he "admitted that his conduct" was violated professional conduct rules, according to the attorney disciplinary proceeding. The state Supreme Court accepted the joint petition for consent discipline and then handed down the deferred suspension.
Melder's probation will begin from the date he and the office of disciplinary counsel execute a formal probation plan, according to the disciplinary proceeding. Melder could face additional discipline should he fail to comply with the conditions of his probation, the disciplinary proceeding said.
Melder was admitted to the Louisiana bar Oct. 20, 2011, according to his profile at the Louisiana State Bar Association's website. Melder appears to have had no prior discipline before the state bar, according to a search of the state bar's decision and rules website.
Melder was an assistant executive counsel in the Louisiana governor's office from November 2012 until January 2014 during the administration of Gov. Bobby Jindal, according to information on Melder's LinkedIn page. In June 2012, the state Senate Committee on Senate and Governmental Affairs recommended Melder be confirmed as a notary.
His LinkedIn page also lists him as currently a partner at Akers+Melder in Baton Rouge, according to his LinkedIn page, although he does not currently appear on the firm's online list of partners.