Local Attorney Gets Reprimand From Ohio Supreme Court

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Athens attorney Susan Gwinn has been given a public reprimand by the Ohio Supreme Court that relates to her two convictions on misdemeanor falsification charges stemming from a 2008 bid to be elected county prosecutor.

The opinion issued this month by the Supreme Court indicates that Gwinn did not contest the issuing of the public reprimand as way of resolving a charge of professional misconduct filed by the court’s disciplinary counsel.

“I am glad that this is finally resolved,” Gwinn said in an email to The Athens Messenger.

In 2009, Gwinn was convicted in Athens County Common Pleas Court of two misdemeanor charges of falsification and was fined $1,000.

She was accused of using more than $27,000 loaned to her by her brother and a friend — which she contended were personal loans, not campaign contributions — to help fund her unsuccessful 2008 campaign for Athens County prosecutor, then listing in campaign finance reports that the money was from her own account.

At the time, she was found innocent of felony charges of money laundering and theft in office, as well as a misdemeanor charge of unauthorized use of property.

The theft and unauthorized use charges related to her alleged use of Democratic Party funds.

According to this month’s Ohio Supreme Court opinion, in a consent-to-discipline agreement the parties stipulated there were mitigating factors, including no prior disciplinary record, the absence of a dishonest for selfish motive and the fact that Gwinn had already been fined in the criminal case.

Also listed were a “cooperative attitude” and “evidence of good character and reputation.”