NEW ORLEANS (Louisiana Record) — For the second time in about four years, a Louisiana Attorney Disciplinary Board (LADB) hearing committee has recommended that a disciplinary charge against New Orleans attorney Deidre Katrina Peterson be dismissed.
"Based upon the law and evidence presented and the factual findings of the hearing committee, the imposition of a sanction in this matter is unwarranted and none is imposed," said the eight-page recommendation issued by LADB Hearing Committee No. 8 on June 4.
The office of disciplinary counsel had charged Peterson with failures to act with reasonable diligence and promptness on behalf of a client, to communicate reasonably and promptly and to provide a client with sufficient information. "Based on the testimony of the witnesses and the evidence presented by ODC and [Peterson], this committee finds ODC has failed to prove by clear and convincing evidence that [Peterson] violated rules of professional conduct," the hearing committee's recommendation said.
"Further this committee finds that the following facts have been proved by clear and convincing evidence: 1) [Peterson] exercised reasonable diligence in her representation of complainant; 2) that [Peterson] timely communicated with complainant regarding the material facts and substance of his case; and 3) that [Peterson] timely returned complainant's case file upon request by complainant."
The recommendation was signed May 30 by Committee chair Terrance A. Prout. Committee attorney member Darryl J. Foster and public member Vickie E. Shreves concurred in the committee's recommendations.
Peterson was admitted to the bar in Louisiana on Oct. 9, 1998, according to her profile at the Louisiana State Bar Association's website.
The allegations against Peterson are not the first time a LADB hearing committee has considered a case against her. In April 2014, LADB hearing committee No. 8 recommended that a single charge against Peterson of failing to act with reasonable diligence in representing a client be dismissed. The charge arose from her handling of an application for post-conviction relief on behalf of her client, who was serving a life sentence in a state prison. The committee found the fee she had charged the client was not unreasonable and she had done at least 30 hours worth of work on his behalf. The LADB came to the same conclusion and dismissed the charge the following September.