On Tuesday, January 31, 2023, the District of Columbia Court of Appeals Board on Professional Responsibility recommends the suspension of attorney Darlene C. Jackson for alleged disobedience to Court rules and Orders.
The case is entitled “In the matter of Darlene C. Jackson” and was brought by the Disciplinary Counsel with case no. 22-BD-020.
The charges cited DC Rules of Professional Conduct 3.4(c), 8.1(b), 8.4(d), and D.C. Bar Rule XI, §2(b)(3) which state:
Knowingly disobeying the obligations under the rules of a tribunal.
Knowingly failing to respond reasonably to a demand for information from a disciplinary authority.
Seriously interfering with the administration of justice.
Failing to comply with a Board order.
The Rules of Professional Conduct can be found here.
On March 3, 2022, a Specification of Charges was filed by the Disciplinary Counsel stating, that while the respondent represented the client/s seeking civil damages in a Yellow Train incident, she posted a Sealed Settlement Agreement and Communications involving the case on Twitter. The respondent was later ordered to Show Cause for her actions and mandated to “Cease and desist” from the further posting of other materials involving the sealed Order.
The filing states:
On or about July 30, 2019, Respondent posted on Twitter in a single, published Tweet under the username @DJacksonNBRC, with the associated name “Darlene Jackson, GOP”:
a. Unredacted portions of the court’s sealed order, including the case L. caption, as well as additional details discussed in the attached Confidential Appendix, 133(a);
b. Emails between Respondent and Mr. Trebach regarding provisions of the sealed settlement order;
c. A picture of Mr. Trebach;
d. A news article regarding Ms. Cobb’s death;
e. and The words “Where’s MY CASH [sic].”
The filing continues:
“The Tweet mentioned* the accounts of several high-profile personalities, including @realDonaldTrump, @FLOTUS @cabinet, @Whitellouse, @MarshaBlackburn, as well as several major news outlets, including @ABC, @nbc, @CBS, @CNN, @washpost, and @thehill. DCX 25. 35. The Tweet also tagged Mr. Trebach’s law firm using #BonnerKicrnan’TrebachCrociatalLP. Tr. 100 (Trebach); DCX 25.”
Despite some notifications, the Respondent failed to respond to the Office of Disciplinary Counsel. Instead, she continued to tweet.
The filing further states:
“Between September 17 and 26, 2020, Respondent posted four separate Tweets, all of which included images explicitly referencing the Office of Disciplinary Counsel, juxtaposed to phrases such as “Lying and Stealing,” “Just Ask Becky,” *Smooth Criminals,” and “Investigate the Investigators.” Tr. 194-99 (Matinpour); DCX 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39. “Becky” is the first name of the Senior Assistant Disciplinary Counsel who notified Respondent of Disciplinary Counsel’s investigation and who sent the September 17, 2020, follow-up letter. Tr. 197 (Matinpour); DCX 28 at 0231 (signature block); DCX 29 at 0303 (signature block).”
According to the Court, the respondent knowingly disobeyed the rules and Orders of the Court. Moreover, she knowingly failed to respond and cooperate in the investigation of her conduct. Because of this, the Hearing Committee recommends that the respondent be suspended.
The Disposition states:
“For the foregoing reasons, the Hearing Committee finds that Respondent violated Rules 3.4(¢), 8.1(b), 8.4(d), and D.C. Bar Rule XI, $26)03) by clear and convincing evidence, and that Respondent be suspended from the practice of law for 60 days, with the requirement that she demonstrate fitness prior to resuming the practice of law.”
As of today, Ms. Jackson is listed on the law firm Darlene C. Jackson Law Offices as a practicing attorney. Her info can be found on lawyerDB.com. She practices in Washington, District of Columbia.
A copy of the original filing can be found here.