On Friday, July 28, 2023, the District of Columbia Court of Appeals Board on Professional Responsibility Ad Hoc Hearing Committee recommended the suspension of attorney Leroy M. Fykes, Jr. for misconduct as a guardian and conservator.

The case is entitled “In the Matter of Leroy M. Fykes, Jr.,” with case no. 22-ND-006.

The charges cited DC Rules of Professional Conduct Rule 1.1(a)(b), Rule 1.3(a)(C), Rule 1.16(d), and Rule 8.4(d).

The Rules of Professional Conduct can be found here.

Leroy M. Fykes found himself under scrutiny as he faced disciplinary action over allegations of misconduct during his tenure as a guardian and conservator. The case revolved around Fykes’s involvement in a probate matter and multiple violations of professional conduct rules. Fykes had been in the hot seat following a complaint by Theresa Washington, an heir to the estate of James Clinton Brown. Brown, who owned several properties in various jurisdictions, had been under Fykes’s guardianship and conservatorship, but disputes between Fykes and the heirs, including Washington, had complicated matters.

Among the allegations against Fykes were failures in several key areas. He was accused of neglecting to provide competent representation by not diligently representing Brown within the boundaries of the law. Additionally, Fykes faced accusations of lacking timeliness in addressing the ward’s interests and misrepresenting Brown’s assets, which included an undisclosed certificate of deposit and a Virginia property. Furthermore, his actions were said to have seriously interfered with the administration of justice, ultimately leading to court involvement in the matter.

A significant turning point occurred when Fykes, during a hearing, acknowledged that he had not filed federal or local income tax returns for Brown for tax years 2014-2016, adding a new layer of legal complications. In August 2020, the court issued an order regarding Fykes’s fees, noting a significant disparity between the amounts discussed with his insurance carrier and what he attempted to charge for legal fees. The court found that Fykes had violated “the terms and spirit of the settlement agreement” and “failed to act in good faith.”

In relation to this, The Ad Hoc Hearing Committee of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals Board on Professional Responsibility has released its report and recommendation on the negotiated discipline of Fykes, Jr. According to the report, the Hearing Committee found that the negotiated discipline of a 60-day suspension fully stayed in favor of a one-year probation with conditions, is justified.

The recommendation was made after considering the supporting affidavit submitted by Fykes Jr., the written statement submitted by the complainant, and the representations made during the limited hearing by Fykes Jr. and his counsel, and Disciplinary Counsel. The Hearing Committee also conducted an in-camera review of Disciplinary Counsel’s files and records, and the Chair’s ex parte communications with Disciplinary Counsel.

The recommendation states:

“For the reasons stated above, it is the recommendation of this Hearing Committee that the negotiated discipline be approved and that the Court suspend Respondent for 60 days, fully stayed, in favor of one year of probation, with the conditions set forth in paragraph 12, supra.”

Mr. Fykes Jr. practices in Washington, DC. He is licensed in the District of Columbia with license no. 363819. His info can be found on avvo.com.

A copy of the original filing can be found here.