Friday, August 6, 2010
Big Law Boys Get a Big Break
The original Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal-Sentinel reported the first big break as follows:
"Nobody but the two Chicago men and the woman from Berlin knows for certain exactly what happened at the private boat landing on Green Lake in early morning of Aug. 7, 2005. The 29-year-old woman says the two men - then both attorneys at prominent Chicago law firms - held her down on the hood of her car and cheered each other on as they repeatedly raped her.
The two men say what happened was consensual sex.
The undisputed facts after that night, from the bail amounts and the plea bargains to the minimal sentences and the district attorney's resignation, have some locals in this small tourist town 30 miles west of Fond du Lac wondering if justice was served or if two big-city attorneys got a 'good-ole-boy' break.
Addison and Butler say the woman was 'playful' and 'having fun the whole time.'
Then in December 2006, Green Lake County District Attorney James Camp and the defense struck a deal reducing the charges for both men to reckless endangerment of safety and sexual gratification in public. The reduction dropped the amount of prison time each faced from 60 years for each count of sexual assault to 10 years for reckless endangerment. Camp requested nine months in jail for Addison and six months for Butler.
In another move that stunned the town, McMonigal stayed prison sentences and sentenced Addison to 500 hours of community service and 30 days in jail with work release. Butler got 300 hours of community service. Neither had to register as a sex offender."
Debra Cassens Weiss at the ABAJournal.com reports the disciplinary break:
"An Illinois hearing board has recommended short suspensions for two former BigLaw associates for their conduct during a long day of partying in Wisconsin that ended with a sexual encounter and allegations of rape. The hearing board report recommends a 60-day suspension for Stephan Addison, who formerly worked at Seyfarth Shaw, and a 30-day suspension for Benjamin Butler, who had worked at Schiff Hardin. Addison now has a solo legal practice and is a consultant for a private equity company, while Butler is a solo and an independent contractor with Collins, Bargione and Vuckovich. Both are 2004 graduates of the University of Wisconsin Law School."
The disciplinary opinion is at the link.