The judge who presided over Jack Thompson's Florida Bar trial late last year has recommended that the controversial attorney be found guilty on 27 of 31 professional misconduct charges. The Florida Supreme Court must now rule on those recommendations.
In a report issued last week, Judge Dava Tunis writes:
After considering the arguments presented by the Florida Bar and the Respondent (Thompson), observing the Respondent's demeanor during the nine-day trial proceedings, and carefully reviewing the record consisting of four volumes of exhibits totaling 1700 pages and approximately 2400 pages of transcribed testimony, the Court finds that the facts, circumstances and evidence presented regarding the Respondent's conduct, supports a finding of guilt as to certain Florida Bar rules...
Tunis made 21 recommendations of guilt in relation to Thompson's participation in Strickland vs. Sony, an Alabama case in which the anti-game attorney represented the families of two police officers and a police dispatcher slain by 18-year-old Grand Theft Auto player Devin Moore.
Tunis also recommended that Thompson be found guilty on four out of five counts relating to his 2006 attempt to have Rockstar's Bully declared a public nuisance in a case before Miami Judge Ronald Friedman. An additional two guilty counts stemmed from a non-video game matter.
Among the Florida Bar offenses for which Judge Tunis has recommended a guilty verdict:
- Knowingly making a false statement of material fact or law to a tribunal
- Knowingly disobeying an obligation under the rules of a tribunal
- Communicating the merits of the case with a judge before whom the proceeding is pending
- Using means that have no purpose other than to embarrass, delay or burden a third person
- Engaging in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation
- Engaging in conduct in connection with the practice of law that is prejudicial to the administration of justice, including to knowingly or through callous indifference disparage or humiliate litigants or other lawyers
- Making statements that the lawyer knows to be false or with reckless disregard as to the truth or falsity concerning the qualifications or integrity of a judge
Judge Tunis's full report to the Florida Supreme Court is due on September 2nd. In the meantime, a disciplinary hearing regarding possible sanctions against Thompson will be held before Judge Tunis on June 4th.
For his part, Thompson has made a number of allegations concerning Judge Tunis, including a complaint that state-mandated loyalty oaths were either not signed by the judge or were signed by others. Thompson also has filed federal lawsuits against the Florida Bar and Florida Supreme Court in relation to the Bar charges and other sanctions.
For all GamePolitics coverage of the Bar Trial of Jack Thompson, including transcripts, click here.