On Thursday, December 15, 2022, the Supreme Court of the State of Hawai’i ruled on the Petition seeking immediate suspension from the law practice of Honolulu attorney Moanike’ala Ruth Crowell for failure to respond to subpoenas.
The case, titled In Re: Moanike’ala Ruth Crowell, was brought by the Office of Disciplinary Counsel. Case #ODC Case Nos. 20-0027, 21-0103, 21-0157, 22-0071, 22-0077, 22-0080, and 22-0087.
According to the filing, the Office of Disciplinary Counsel (ODC) filed its petition dated August 11, 2022, seeking Crowell’s suspension from law practice. The Court then held ODC’s petition in abeyance to provide Crowell the opportunity to establish her cooperation. Moreover, the Court found that Crowell failed to respond to four separate subpoenas issued by the ODC.
The Court found Crowell’s failure to respond to ODC as grounds for granting the latter’s petition pursuant to RSCH Rule 2.12(a), which states:
‘An attorney who is the subject of an investigation by Counsel, or who is the subject of a disciplinary proceeding pending before a hearing committee or officer, the Disciplinary Board, or the supreme court, may be suspended from the practice of law, pending consideration of the charges against the attorney, upon a finding that the attorney is guilty of a failure to cooperate with the investigation or disciplinary proceeding. Such a finding shall be based upon the attorney’s default in responding to the petition or notice filed by Counsel, or the attorney’s failure to submit a written response to pending allegations of professional misconduct, or to comply with any lawful demand of the supreme court, the hearing committees, hearing officers, or Counsel made in connection with any investigation, hearing, or disciplinary proceeding, including failure to comply with a subpoena issued under Rule.’
Accordingly, the Court ruled against Crowell for her failure to respond to ODC’s lawfully issued subpoenas.
The disposition reads:
“IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that, pursuant RSCH Rule 2.12A, Respondent Cromwell is suspended from the practice of law. This order is effective immediately, and until further order of this court.”
Prior to the suspension, Ms. Crowell practiced in Honolulu, Hawai’i with The MRC Firm by Moani R. Crowell & Assoc., LLLC. She has been licensed in Hawai’i, license no. 9296. Her info can be found on Avvo.
A copy of the original filing can be found here.