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Mark Dwyer, Again Running for Judge in Flagler, Finds Himself on the Defensive. Again.

| June 1, 2012

Mark Dwyer for his own defense. (© FlaglerLive)

What is it about Mark Dwyer?

The Palm Coast lawyer is smart, suave, well known, well liked, civically engaged. At 42, he’s young and ambitious enough to get to where he wants to be: he ran for Flagler County Circuit Judge two years ago and got nearly 20 percent of the vote in a six-way, four-county race, cleaning up on the Flagler County vote. He’s running for Flagler County Judge this year in a seven-way race and would appear to have a solid chance.

But there’s this. Dwyer gets in trouble. He gets himself in trouble.

Then, like a good lawyer, he does an excellent job of explaining it, rationalizing it, diminishing it. To hear him, he makes a good case for near-exculpation. But then there’s the record, and the pattern. Twice in four years he’s run afoul of the Florida Bar. Twice in four years he’s been punished, the first time with an admonishment—the lowest level of punishment under Florida Bar disciplinary actions—and now with a reprimand that will become public once the Florida Supreme Court signs off on it, as it is expected to. Dwyer has already agreed to the reprimand.

Yet he’s running to be a judge.

Two years ago the reprimand was the result of an accounting issue. Lawyers are required to keep clear records of the trust funds they keep for their clients. Dwyer—or Dwyer’s office help: he put it on her—didn’t. The client wasn’t harmed: no funds were misappropriated or lost. But when the account was reviewed, its maintenance was found to be lacking. Dwyer was reprimanded. He’d been a lawyer five years, the mistake was chalked up to a lack of experience.

This new issue is more serious. It involves proper representation of a client. It gets a little complicated, as court cases usually do. And there’s the Florida Bar’s findings, as opposed to Dwyer’s explanations, though Dwyer isn’t disputing the findings. Rather, he says, the findings don’t tell the whole story. He sat down for a two-hour interview to lay out his story, along with documentation.

Facts of the Case

The case has to do with a boat sale. In August 2006, Richard Reid of Palm Coast sold a boat to Ida Jack of Jacksonville for $16,750. It was a Sea Ray 268 Sundancer. Reid had advertised the boat with a handwritten ad of his design. The original asking price was $24,900. The advertising that drew in Jack included this key phrase that would be at the heart of the legal case: “New factory engine and out drive.”

The boat’s engine was not new. Reid had had it for two years, and had run it for about 70 hours. Soon after Jack took possession of the boat, the boat malfunctioned. Jack sued Reid for damages—to recoup the costs of the engine repairs. The case went before Flagler County Judge Sharon Atack—whose seat Dwyer is seeking—on March 12, 2008. Atack eventually ruled for Jack, and ordered Reid to pay $10,160 in damages. There were no punitive damages.

None of this is in dispute. Nor is Dwyer’s defense at the trial. He had a sale contract both sides signed on the day of the sale which had another key phrase: “Boat is sold in as is condition. Sale is final.”

Here’s where the complications and diverging interpretations begin, which have as much to do with what happened in the courtroom as outside of it. The judge ruled that Reid misrepresented the condition of the boat engine when he claimed it was new, therefore the buyer was entitled to damages. Dwyer says the “as is” clause overrides the ad, no matter what the ad says, because it was in the buyer’s power to inspect the boat before buying it, under the well-known “buyer beware” convention, which courts also recognize. He was willing to appeal the ruling for free.

None of that has anything to do with disciplinary action against Dwyer—until Reid’s case against him, which is what brought it on, is examined.

The Reids: “Thrown To the Wolves”

After the trial and before Atack’s judgment, Reid faxed a long hand-written letter to Dwyer that began: “Lorraine and I think the world of you. But your staff handled our case badly.” Reid then went on to outline a series of issues that would astound any lay reader.

“I feel like I was thrown to the wolves when you told me to take the stand without earlier preparation or support from my witnesses,” Reid wrote. He had been the only witness on his own behalf.

Dwyer had a reason for not using the four witnesses. He says none of the four would have helped Reid’s case. He produced an internal investigative memo that was done for the Bar and forwarded to it. Dwyer was working on the Reid case with another attorney at one point, Shimene Shepard-Ryan, whom he’d assigned to contact the four witnesses. She had. The four witnesses, she told the Bar investigator, “could not truthfully testify in any matter to be beneficial to the defendant,” the investigator’s memo reads. It goes on: “Attempts by this investigator to interview the four witnesses were not completed,” as two of them were no longer affiliated with the marina where the boat had been sold, while two others had told the marina owner that all they could testify to was the whereabouts of the boat.

The Florida Bar’s Findings

The issues the Reids raised are replicated in the Florida Bar report finding against Dwyer. After their initial consultation with Dwyer on May 3, 2007, the Reids had no “meaningful communications” from him until late August that year, and themselves initiated a call to inquire what had happened with their case. They provided the names of four witnesses, none of whom Dwyer used.

After August, Dwyer had “little communication with the Reids,” until the trial day. The Reids didn’t even know they had a trial. Dwyer’s office had called them the day before to remind them, but did not leave a time or place for the trial. Reid was late to it. Nor had Dwyer prepared Reid for the trial: they hadn’t met to go over strategy. Dwyer, the Bar’s findings read, “decided such a meeting would not be necessary as the boat was sold without warranties and would result in his clients incurring attorney’s fees. He did not give the Reids the option of choosing to pay for such a meeting to prepare for the trial.”

Dwyer says it’s to him incomprehensible that the Reids didn’t know of the trial when, within days of sending them a letter when the trial was originally set, Richard Reid called him and asked him if the trial was really necessary…

Atack entered her final judgment on April 5, 2008. Dwyer didn’t provide the Reids a copy of the judgment until May 5, when he met with them.

Ends and Means

The Reids were not rich. Dwyer and the Reids had agreed in 2007 to a retainer and a monthly payment plan of $200. The principal reason Dwyer did not hire a court reporter or pursue boat inspections or expert witnesses, he said, was to save the Reids money. They fell in arrears. He says most attorneys would have quit the case. He didn’t. He proposed to them that they could appeal the case for free if they made a payment toward their outstanding balance, and pay the court’s appellate costs. The Reids agreed to make an additional payment, which they did on May 7, 2008, and which to them meant Dwyer’s proposal was a go. Instead, on May 12, Dwyer wrote the Reids asking for the proposal for a modified fee payment arrangement.

He never filed the appeal. On July 2, he wrote them again saying that they hadn’t sent him a modified plan of payment, and that the appeal deadline had passed, and that he could no longer represent them.

Reid, Dwyer says, first tried to sue him for malpractice, but then took the complaint to the Florida Bar. The Bar based its reprimand on that succession of events, though in the end the reprimand is for one explicit issue: that Dwyer did not handle the matter of not hiring a court reporter properly by failing to include the Reids on his decision. There was an aggravating factor in the Bar’s decision: Dwyer’s 2008 case, which establishes a pattern.

He has agreed to complete Ethics School by July 1 and pay all fees associated with the Bar’s action, which add up to $1,757, not including the $750 for Ethics School.

Dwyer is not disputing those conclusions or the costs, but he stresses that the settlement agreement is focused on the court reporter matter. It doesn’t necessarily eliminate the other matters, which are part of the findings. “It’s akin to a plea agreement in that you as the responded are saying, I will accept this, and as a result of accepting that,” Dwyer said, “I will not fight this issue, I will not take it to a fight and bring it to whatever level.”

Notably, the Reids never brought up the issue of a lacking court transcript. It’s the Bar that found that out when it sought out the transcript for its investigation. Once the transcript was found lacking, the investigators wanted to know why. They then discovered that Dwyer hadn’t followed the normal procedures of including his client when he made the decision to exclude a court reporter.

“I am prepared to stand up and let people judge for themselves whether they feel that that is significant enough, or whether that disqualifies a person from being a good judge. I’m prepared to let people decide. I think people are smart enough to make a good decision. And I think the people who are truly interested can see through and see what’s going on.”

Politics and the Feliciano Factor

Dwyer was referring to politics, which are never far from the bowels of local contests, even when individuals aren’t necessarily running for office. It bears noting that the Florida Bar’s documents that landed on reporters’ desks in 2010 and in 2012 regarding Dwyer’s issues were not public records. They were anonymously delivered by people who had access to the documents. One person was associated with both cases: Sharon Feliciano, who is also running for county judge in Flagler.

“She served on the Florida Bar Grievance Committee [sic.] from 2008-2011 serving as Chair for the last six months of her term,” Feliciano’s campaign biography notes at her website. “This committee investigates complaints filed against attorneys.”

Feliciano was not on the greiavnec committee when it first investigated Dwyer in 2008. But in 2010, Feliciano was campaigning for Sid Nowell, who was one of the candidates for circuit judge and Dwyer’s chief rival in Flagler County (the two have a long history, and once worked together. They’re not fond of each other.)

On Thursday, Feliciano said she did take part in the second investigation–though she wasn’t yet chairing the committee–and did, in fact, vote to reprimand Dwyer. But in either cases, Feliciano said, she “unequivocally” did not release documents to the press.

She added: “I would point you to Florida Bar rules of conduct, dealing with grievance committees: at the time of the vote, which was back in 2010, Mr. Dwyer had the right to request my recusal and did not do so, and at any time during the vote, if anyone on the committee, including the head of the committee, felt that I was being biased towards Mr. Dwyer, they would have asked me to recuse myself as well. Mr. Dwyer never made contact with the head of the committee to request my recusal, and it has never been an issue until this time.”

Dwyer mentioned Feliciano by name during the interview, then had misgivings about it, saying he doesn’t want to get personal.

Dwyer’s Apologia Pro Vita Sua

Asked point blank if he believes he considers himself an ethical person, Dwyer said: “Absolutely ethical person. And I think that after being investigated I’m probably the most thoroughly vetted of all seven candidates, in that I’ve had the microscope turned on me, and the microscope has been turned on me and looked at every detail of things I’ve done in my practice can still not bring any charge against my ethics, my character, intentional wrong-doing.

“Of course it’s self-serving, but to me that says more about the person than the sensational lies that I’m stuck with, which most of it is not even true, has not even turned out to be factually founded. I mean, if anyone believes that not writing a cover letter to say, do you want me to get a court reporter, when a person has already expressed and is not even paying for their lawyer services, if somebody feels that that disqualifies you or make you a poor judge, or make somebody else a better candidate, I’m fine with it. I don’t think that the majority of people will. I think people are smart enough, I think people understand how the law works. I think that anyone who looks honestly will say, if he had just dropped those clients when they were not paying him like most lawyers would have, none of this would have happened. ”

So why accept the reprimand?

“Because $10,000 later of attorney’s fees, and countless hours of preparing to go to trial, when I have the number of clients that I have and their cases to have to worry about, is not worth it to me. I can stand up and take responsibility for whatever I’ve done. If it would be found at the end, which it would be, that I did not take the time to write a letter to them asking if they wanted a court reporter, and if that’s worthy of a reprimand, I will accept it. To me, you have to pick your battles. And I know who I am. My clients know what type of lawyer I am. The community knows what type of lawyer I am. Spending that kind of time and taking away from the clients that I do have, that I need to represent, to me, it is not a wise expenditure.

“If,” Dwyer continued,  “at the end of the day, after all this, the result would be, well, Mark, we would find that you did not consult them to find out if they want a court reporter—which a court reporter has no bearing on the outcome of a case. It has no bearing on the outcome of a case. Then I’m fine with it. I’m fine with it. I guess because I’m inside the profession. I know that the overall picture can be seen and would be seen if anyone is interested in looking into it. I don’t feel like it damages my reputation, other than the people that want to look for that to be damaged, because if you understand what the level of a reprimand is—and a lot of the public may not understand how minor that is in the Bar’s eyes. But it’s discipline. I’m OK with it. I’m OK with it. I’m a big boy. That is not a battle that I, trying to help my clients right now, trying to you know, build and continue this firm”—he works at Palm Coast’s Chiumento Selis Dwyer—“and preparing to present a good choice for the county, for their judge, that is just not a battle that I’m fighting.”

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20 Responses for “Mark Dwyer, Again Running for Judge in Flagler, Finds Himself on the Defensive. Again.”

  1. ric says:

    Another politician who thinks he’s above the law and lines his pockets with tax payers dollars. Perhaps he should be in front of the judge instead of behind the bench..

    • Vikki says:

      Wow!! This really clarifies some issues. I don’t get the impression that this is “another politician who thinks he is above the law. What law? He concedes that he has made “errors”, not commited crimes.

      I commend Flagler Live for what seems to be a very objective, well detailed report, with little bias. Whereas, some people speak of”coded” language; not everyone recognizes it when they come across it. I feel that I do recognize much of it, and it can be extremely harmful or helpful, based on what the author wants it to do. This reporter doesn’t wish to find himself too deeply identified with either side of the arguments raised here, so some of his language lifts him out of that “mire”.
      However, many of those who wrote comments don’t have that burden, and because this is an opportunity to sling dirt at a candidate they don’t support, took full advantage of it.
      Concerning the candidate; the representative of his clients, some things should simply be part of their relationship, and nothing taken for granted. That is a mistake many, many men make in their personal and business lives, and while I, personally, find it negligent, I do, however, believe that once pointed out to a person, he can correct that behavior; and that is what the Florida Bar’s ethics workshop will probably point out.
      Nevertheless, is any of this an issue that speaks to unworthiness for the Bench? NOT!! What it does say, is that Candidates for Judge are People, Too (Human, Capable of Error. The severity, degree, and possible intent of the error(s) as well as the outcome attributed to it, must be criteria for judgment).
      Admittedly, failure to maintain upkeep of Trust Fund records is no small error, but it is also not criminal. No wrong-doing was associated, no loss to any client. That task was assigned to an employee, as it should have been in a scenario where clients are coming and going in decent numbers all of the time, and are some degree of higher priority. Perhaps, due to his inexperience, or even client load, Marc failed to regularly check up on the employee in all areas of her performance. This is not reprehensible behavior. What is reprehensible is the fact that as old as this news is, it is brought into record at this point in time, and pointed to as a “pattern” (code word) in his performance. Where is the pattern? And, in what is the pattern manifest? Are we being manipulated through the verbiage to think that this sort of error is frequent in Marc’s practice? Is doing anything twice a pattern? What about the other hundreds of cases, where clients have lauded the way he has handled their cases, and his temperament? Doesn’t that establish a much stronger “pattern”.
      The article indicates that Marc was disciplined twice in four years, with both findings being subject to “minor” sanctions by the bar. Yet, we have all of these private citizens with little to no law experience, screaming how much more serious the punishment ought to be than that determined by the Bar. Is there ulterior motivation in those protests? And even if not, how serious are the offenses when placed in the perspective of the accomplishments of his career, cases handled and won, his age, his community involvement, his family relationships, his moral character, his desire to further his work to improve the representation of the people through the judicial system, over the long term?
      Another issue is one responder’s comparing voting for Marc to voting for Barack Obama. It doesn’t show objective, rational or fair thought, and has no relevance to the issue at hand. Every man/woman must be judged on his/her own merit. In voting for a Judge, it is imperative that, that vote be based on rational criteria, not racial, or prejudicial because a candidate resembles another in many facets of appearance or image. This is not a Presidential election, Marc is NOT Barack Obama, and it is about choosing the best person to decide the issues of the courts for Flagler County
      Politics is a dirty game, but choosing a judge to make decisions for our community shouldn’t be neither a game nor dirty. Why can’t we just “keep the main thing the main thing” and throw out those things that simply muddy the waters – unnecessarily?

  2. NortonSmitty says:

    Sound like normal everyday bullshit we all put up with in our modern society these days. I’m sure he is well qualified, but after I voted for Barack Obama thinking I was getting a 21st century FDR and getting George W. in blackface, I am not going to give any Black candidate the benefit of the doubt. Don’t give a rats pattoot if you think that’s racist. I’m writing it off as Hell has no Fury like a hopeful voter scorned.

    Plus he’s got the fact he’s a Lawyer going against him.

    • Robert says:

      So can one infer that you would give a White candidate the benefit of the doubt?

      And if you would and more than likely have then you should correctly be labeled one who is biased based on race.

      • NortonSmitty says:

        And also FlaglerLive cut out a lot of other silly stuff out of my post that might have made it clearer.

        [Norton, the only thing we cut out was your cheerleading for a particular candidate. Other comments by other authors have similarly not been approved for being exclusively cheers for other candidates. This thread is being carefully moderated to keep it strictly on topic and on this case. It’s not to be an excuse for other candidates’ fans to shill for their man or their woman. The lines deleted out of your comment would not have clarified the point you made; they merely spoke of your support for your man in contrast to your disapproval of Dwyer.–FL]

  3. TC says:

    If more people knew they could file complaints with the FL Bar and get action, they probably would. Confidence lacks in the system.

    Attorneys and Judges should be held accountable.

    The firm an attorney works at speaks volumes for their character.

    All attorneys should be required to take ethics classes on a regular bases.

  4. kenpc says:

    Thanks for a well written investigative piece.

  5. David says:

    A smooth talkin’ Lawyer with issues. Sounds like the one in the White House. For get it.

    • jenifer lopez says:

      and this guy wants to be on the Bench for the Court system? He is a smooth talker
      Let him stay as a lawyer and be Chuimento’s problem

  6. Really?! says:

    From the article it seems to focus on Feliciano’s part in the inquiry on Dwyer. There was a whole panel of lawyers on the ethics committee, who ruled unanimously to discipline Dwyer. It is wrong to single her out just because she is running for Judge now. This new complaint is apparently years old, and is just now coming out. I understand why Dwyer wishes to minimize this story, but to say this is “minor” is almost laughable. This is a serious ethics violation, which he didn’t even dispute. Why is that? I would not call being ordered by the Florida Supreme Court to enroll in ethics school a “minor” matter. It was recommended he also recieve a public reprimand, which is also not minor. Thank you Flagler Live for doing a very detailed article. We, as voters, need to be informed in our community about who represents us. I have to disagree with Dwyer, as I think this does indeed damage his reputation. His own clients are the ones that initiated the complaints against him, not anyone else. This extremely detailed article helped make up my mind as who NOT to vote for. Thank you.

  7. PJ says:

    So, the questions?

    Is he he a good lawyer that made a mistake and got his wrist slapped?

    Or, is he a bad laywer that really does not do a good job for his clients?

    And, is this the best of what we have in a choice to vote for?

    What doooo you do?

    Let’s get this straight “a panel of lawyers voted to discipline Dwyer” REALLY?

    My guess is Kimberly Weeks would let him run for Mayor of Dallas………………What a mess we are here in Flagler County!!!!

  8. The Florida Bar contact number to report any suspected lawyer unethical violation is 1-800-342-8060. Most people do not realize that laymen serve in the grievance process. The Florida Bar added laypersons to the process more than 20 years ago to make the process transparent. If a client believes his/her lawyer has done something wrong, the process requires that it be reported to the Bar in writing. It will then be reviewed by a local grievance committee. If they think there is a problem, then there will be a formal charge and a trial. If the lawyer has done something unethical the Florida supreme court can put them on probation, suspend or revoke the license, or in less serious cases issue a private or public reprimand.

    • Really?! says:

      So, Phil…I’m not sure what you’re trying to say. You’re the experienced attorney. Is this a minor or major violation? You said less serious punishment is a reprimand, which he will be getting a public one in this case. But, you also say more serious ethical issues have can be put on probation for. I believe Dwyer was already put on probation for his last Florida Bar discipline. This time, is mandated for ethics school. This all seems very serious to me. I don’t think a judge candidate should have these things on their record. This is why I commend Flagler Live for educating us voters about the candidates. However this is spun with damage control, it isn’t good at all in my eyes and many other voters I have talked to.

  9. Will says:

    There are seven candidates for Flagler County judge who will be in our August primary. The top two will stand again in the November general election.

    This is tough, for I don’t think that most of the practicing lawyers in the county know all of the seven at this point. It will be difficult for voters to cast intelligent votes unless they take the time to learn about the candidates. It’s work sometimes to become an informed voter – and it is a civic responsibility – whether or not people have the time or interest to devote to the process.

    All seven of the candidates have many good qualities. There will be candidate forums and newspaper articles in the two months before early voting starts. Take the time to learn more about them all, then vote for the one you think best. It’s important for our system of justice, and who knows, maybe YOU could end up in front of our new judge in years ahead on one side of a case or the other… Wouldn’t you want the brightest, most fair, and experienced judge on the bench?

  10. Nicole Skale says:

    The ethics class is just a standard Continuing Legal Education ethics course offered by the Bar as a part of consent decrees. Every 3 years ALL lawyers have to take a minimum number of 3 ethics credits; it doesn’t mean they have done anything unethical.

    I don’t understand why anyone would even bring race into this? It disgusts me that in 2012 people still have so much bigotry inside them and only in politics does it realllllly come out. Plus this news is old news, it came out a few years ago too, I’m pretty sure there has to be other vetting of other candidates soon (I would like to think).

    With that being said, Marc still has my vote. He is extremely fair, a super kind and genuine person and I feel he would do a great job being a judge and serving this county fairly.

    • Really?! says:

      As far as I know, Dwyer seems to be the only one with several disciplines by the Florida Bar. I think being mandated to attend Ethics school is VERY different from taking some credits to maintain your Bar license. In this case, he was mandated to attend the school because he was unethical. That seems to be the main part of the complaint. His clients alleged that he did them wrong, which Dwyer himself apparently didn’t dispute. And, this is not old news. The complaint from years ago was a separate incident. I agree with you that Marc is a super kind and genuine person, but with these problems he doesn’t seem ready to handle the responsibility of the job. This county court position is primarily criminal law, with some minor family issues also. Marc does not primarily handle this type of law in his practice. I’m glad you like him, but this isn’t a popularity contest. This is a serious position which, in my opinion, he does not have the correct qualifications or experience to do. The ethical complaints are a different issue entirely. Both of these things combined means we (and you) should learn more about the other 6 candidates. Yes, this is 2012…we shouldn’t vote on the person that is “nice.” We need to vote on background, experience, and qualifications. Two disciplines and a previous probation for unethical behavior should automatically remove him from the ballot, in my opinion. How can he judge people in front of him, when he has been in trouble himself with his law peers. Oh right, I guess we have to overlook that because he is a nice guy.

  11. sadie sue says:

    I have read this article, and I thank Flagler Live for providing so much information, as well as all the comments that have been posted.

    I find this whole situation to be completely frustrating on two levels: the political aspect and a judicial candidate’s professional behavior.

    First, I don’t understand why “politics” is playing into this issue. After reading this article about Mr. Dwyer’s current issue with the Florida Bar I decided to do my own research. I went to the Florida Bar Association web site and then to the State Supreme Court of Florida website and searched for Mr. Dwyer’s name. The FBA site provided me with information on his previous disciplinary action, and the FL Supreme Court showed me the current action. This would prove that the information is publicly available. As such, I see no reason for political finger pointing as to the the source of the information. Mr. Dwyer is running for a public office and should have expected this information to come to light. Therefore, in my opinion, there is no reason to point fingers at any of his opponents for bringing this issue to light.

    Second, I have a huge problem with someone who is running for the position of judge to be forced to attend ethics class never mind be subject to a public reprimand by the Court. In my mind we as a society hold certain people to a higher moral, legal, and ethical standard based upon their profession (predominantly those employed within the criminal justice system). Judges would certainly fall under this category. I for one would not want my “fate” to be judged by someone who is unable to determine the difference between right and wrong, or what ethics dictate their professional career as a lawyer.

    My. Dwyer chose to subject himself to public scrutiny when he decided to run for an elected office, and he needs to deal with the consequences of his professional actions.

    Again, I thank Flagler Live for producing such an informative and in depth article. As a voter I welcome this type of information about a candidate for office.

  12. D Glove says:

    All right, I’ve had enough. Sadie Sue, do you really mean to tell me you wonder why politics is playing into this issue? The reason is because “politics is playing into this issue”. I am sure that none of the 7 candidates would come out and tell you that they have never made a minor mistake in their practice. If they did say so, I would not want them for my judge, because they would not be honest. At least Mr. Dwyer has the courage to accept responsibility for his actions and isn’t hiding behind facts we didn’t previously know.

    If you tell me you think that not asking a client who refused to pay for their own defense, whether or not they wanted a court reporter is a bigger ethical issue than someone voting on another attorney’s Bar complaint, while actively campaigning against them, and not recusing themself, then I will tell you that you are probably part of the “politics that are playing into this issue”.

    Flagler live did a great job in revealing “all” the facts surrounding this story, unlike the other so-called news source paper in this town. We the people are not stupid. We can see what is going on here. Ethics are about what people do when they think no one is watching them. Apparently, Ms Feliciano thought no one was watching in 2010 when she was campaigning against Dwyer while at the same time voting against him while on the greivance committee.

    If Dwyer’s issue was a major ethical issue as you are trying to suggest, the bar would not have agreed to a minor penalty. The report pointed out his character and reputation as mitigating factors, and only the previous bar issue as an aggravating factor. The previous bar issue (which you can find also since you are so adept at research) states that there was no intentional wrong-doing. By my math that adds up to two minor issues, which Dwyer has not tried to duck. I am sure if someone were to start digging, (which I might) some anonymous reports could start showing up about other candidates as well.

    And Really?! – as for your comment. Yes, Mr. Chanfrau is the legal professional as it is clear from his comments. All attorney trust account issues are serious. However, when I read that after careful investigation, the Bar found no losses to clients, and no intentional wrong-doing, and that only an admonishment was recommended (the lowest form of discipline) that tells me that I can trust the lawyer. And the probation, per the report stated that the Bar would be monitoring his record keeping, which he must have done properly after getting trained by Law office management. Last I checked, Judges are not going to be doing accounting on the bench so I am not buying your commentary as the “genuinely concerned.”

    The fact that this report was circulated to the reporters about only Dwyer tells me someone has a political agenda, and whomever is responsible, be assured we are watching and we will not stay silent long.

    [Note: the ip address attached to this comment is from Chiumento Guntharp PA (the former name of Chiumento Selis Dwyer), where Mark Dwyer is an attorney. It is FlaglerLive’s policy to prevent individuals writing under an assumed name when they are the subject of the story. FlaglerLive checked with the sender through his email address, who promptly certified his identity by his full name and phone number, satisfying the requirement. He had merely been at Dwyer’s office when he wrote the comment. We appreciate the clarification MG.–FL]

    • Hahahahaha says:

      The fact that this was written from Dwyer’s office speaks volumes. There apparently is so much more to this than not hiring a court reporter. The damage control is in full effect trying to make this sound like it’s no big deal. What other candidate has been disciplined by the Florida Bar? Please, find out and inform us. If you’re trying to say that 2 Bar disciplines should just be forgotten and not taken into consideration when voting, you’re wrong. You also mentioned he won’t be doing accounting on the bench. What law does Dwyer primarily do at his practice? It’s not what this position will be doing either. As far as I know, it’s a criminal and family law position. How much of those cases does he do on a daily basis? Since you just called the other posters out, answer those questions and the other questions posted above. I’ve only seen people saying his discipline is minor and he’s a nice guy. It’s still discipline from wrongdoing, and being nice shouldn’t matter. Vote on character and qualifications for the job listed. His character is seemingly an issue…not by me but from his OWN clients that he represents. Yet, he wants to represent every citizen in this county and he can’t even do a good job for his clients. Let me know how many criminal and family cases he has handled compared to the other six and get back to me. The few people that are trying to defend Dwyer are actually making it worse trying to gloss over the details and focus on things such as not hiring a court reporter. Nice try. It is what it is.

      [Hahahahaha, you’ve written under at least two different handles so far. If you’re going to cast stones at writers’ origins, you might want to start by polishing the glass around your comments, however valid your points. Thanks.–FL]

      • d glove says:

        Hahaha – You can check, but the last I checked Family Cases aren’t in front of County Judges. I can speak from experience that clients and others do support Dwyer. Many do, and they also visit his office. Support your person. Stop trying to smear others.

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