LADB recommends suspension for New Orleans attorney convicted of 'chest bumping' DA

By Karen Kidd | Aug 13, 2018

NEW ORLEANS (Louisiana Record) — Baton Rouge attorney Felix Anthony DeJean IV faces possible suspension following a Louisiana Attorney Disciplinary Board (LADB) recommendation to the state Supreme Court after his conviction for allegedly "chest bumping" a district attorney while leaving a judge's chambers in 2015.

"This is the third disciplinary matter in which the misconduct is related to [DeJean]'s failure to control his anger," the LADB said in its 15-page recommendation issued Aug. 9. "Given this history, the board finds that a one year and one day suspension, with no period of deferral, is warranted. This suspension will require [DeJean] to establish his fitness by clear and convincing evidence before returning to the practice of law."

The LADB's recommendation follows a hearing committee's legal conclusions and its own recommendations filed in March. The hearing committee had recommended a six-month suspension.

In his answer filed in May 2017, DeJean denied his actions in the chest bumping violated professional conduct rules and, in a pre-hearing memorandum filed the following July, he argued "that a public reprimand is the appropriate sanction," the LADB's recommendation said.

DeJean was admitted to the bar in Louisiana on Oct. 10, 1997, according to his profile at the Louisiana State Bar Association's website.

The chest bump incident allegedly occurred March 19, 2015 as DeJean and Concordia Parish district attorney Bradley Burget were leaving the chambers of Judge Kathy Johnson of the Seventh Judicial District Court in Cambodia Parish following a conference, according to formal charges included in the hearing committee's report. "At the conclusion of the conference, the parties were leaving the judge's chambers when respondent exchanged words with the district attorney, physically confronted him and 'chest bumped' Mr. Burget twice, perpetrating a battery upon the district attorney," the formal charges said.

DeJean later told the Louisiana Record that he'd been the victim in the incident.

In July 2016, DeJean was found guilty of simple battery, a misdemeanor, over the incident, for which he received a six-month suspended sentence, 18 months of supervised probation, was fined and ordered to complete an anger management program, according to the hearing committee's report.

In previous disciplines before the state bar, DeJean was publicly reprimanded in 2013 and was placed on probation in 2006.

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Louisiana Attorney Disciplinary Board Louisiana State Bar Association Louisiana Supreme Court

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