Ira Haught
News Junkie

West Union, WV

#1 Oct 24, 2012
"Ira Haught engaged in a pattern of conduct that demonstrated a disregard for the authority of the court"

Haught is the Republican nominee for judge in the Third Judicial Circuit, which includes Ritchie, Doddridge and Pleasants counties. He is running against Democrat Tim Sweeney, of Pleasants County. Sweeney was appointed to the fill the judge's chair in December 20102 following Robert Holland's death

HARRISVILLE - A Ritchie County attorney, seeking a circuit court judgeship and facing a pair of ethics complaints, has been chastised by a circuit court judge who questioned his conduct stemming from a pair of 2007 lawsuits and his failure to comply with orders of the court.

http://www.newsandsentinel.com/page/content.d...
Read this - part 1

United States

#2 Oct 24, 2012
http://www.newsandsentinel.com/page/content.d...

(From article link above) complet article part 1 of 2 ....

Haught rebuked by judge for lawsuit conduct

Attorney seeks circuit court judgeship

October 24, 2012

By JODY MURPHY ([email protected]), Parkersburg News and Sentinel

HARRISVILLE - A Ritchie County attorney, seeking a circuit court judgeship and facing a pair of ethics complaints, has been chastised by a circuit court judge who questioned his conduct stemming from a pair of 2007 lawsuits and his failure to comply with orders of the court.

Last week Circuit Court Judge Thomas Evans signed a permanent injunction order holding Harrisville attorney Ira Haught in contempt for failure to comply with prior court orders and sanctions. The rebuke stems from a 2007 case in which Haught is accused of filing two lawsuits on behalf of a man who later testified he had no knowledge of any such suits and had never retained Haught as his attorney.

Haught is the Republican nominee for judge in the Third Judicial Circuit, which includes Ritchie, Doddridge and Pleasants counties. He is running against Democrat Tim Sweeney, of Pleasants County. Sweeney was appointed to the fill the judge's chair in December 20102 following Robert Holland's death

In his summary, Evans stated the defendants, Haught and the Whittle Corp., engaged in a pattern of conduct that demonstrated a disregard for the authority of the court.

Evans said the defendants' failure to obey the order without justification "evidences a long pattern of flagrant disregard for the civil justice system, and the rules thereunder, resulting in the wasting of the scarce resources of the court and needlessly multiplying the cost of litigation for innocent parties."

A message left for Haught at his law office in Harrisville was not returned.
Read this - part 2

United States

#3 Oct 24, 2012
(article continued from above)

Evans' orders stem from two lawsuits filed by Haught in an attempt to divest Mike Ross Inc. and Ross & Wharton Gas Co. Inc. of its oil and gas lease interests in various properties through a "top lease" executed in favor of the Whittle Corp.

A top lease is one covering property where a current lease already exists. The top lease becomes effective only after the first lease has been terminated.

According to its website, the Whittle Corp. is a fifth-generation family-oriented business producing over 300 oil and gas wells. According to filings with the West Virginia Secretary of State's office, Haught is listed as the company's director.

In October 2007, Haught filed two separate complaints against Mike Ross Inc. and Ross & Wharton Gas on behalf of Donald Sheets.

Sheets, according to the findings of fact, testified in a deposition he had no idea that lawsuits were filed in his name and never gave Haught permission to do so. Sheets, according to the order, also testified he had not retained Haught as his lawyer and knew nothing about the tracts.

Sheets testified there was no truth to the complaints, Haught never disclosed to Sheets that Whittle would financially benefit from a verdict against Ross and Ross & Wharton Gas and Haught never disclosed his financial interest in Whittle.

Haught's two suits against the Ross companies were dismissed in May 2008.

In a motion for summary judgment filed by Ross and Ross & Wharton, the order found Haught violated his duties to the court and the state standards of professional conduct.

"As a result of the serious questions surrounding Mr. Haught's conduct, he was referred to the West Virginia Lawyer Disciplinary Board.

In issuing the permanent injunction, filed with the Ritchie County Circuit Clerk Oct. 18, Evans ordered Haught and Whittle to pay $2,000 a day beginning on the date of the hearing on the motion for contempt, which was filed July 12.

Evans also issued a permanent injunction against Haught and the Whittle Corp., from further trespass on any of the plaintiffs' interests.

The court ordered Haught and Whittle to terminate any and all top leases on any of the plaintiffs' interests as well as provide a listing of all such top leases and an accounting and reimbursement of all revenues improperly possessed by the defendants.

"Based on the foregoing, the court finds the defendants failure to comply was "willful and contemptuous" and warranted sanctions.

The court awarded the plaintiffs' attorney fees and costs and issued a permanent injunction against Haught from conducting any further activities on any of the plaintiffs' leasehold interested.

"It cannot be contested that the oil and gas industry is growing in our state and conduct that encourages individuals and corporations to deprive the rightful owners of the benefit of their contract through frivolous litigation tactics must be deterred," Evans stated. "To allow otherwise would encourage an endless stream of frivolous lawsuits, such as those at issue here, simply to frustrate the rights of mineral owners that will only negatively impact the development of natural resources in the state."

Evans went even further stating the entire judicial system would be harmed by allowing such conduct to go undeterred.

The judge threatened Haught with incarceration if his orders are not obeyed.

In addition to the sanctions issued by Evans, Haught is the subject of two, 2010 ethics complaints filed with the Lawyer Disciplinary Board. He is accused of converting money for his own use and attempting to deceive investigators about his clients in another.

Haught was scheduled for hearing in Charleston in August. The hearing has been continued to Dec. 5.

Maura Lewis, legal assistant for the the disciplinary board, said there are other complaints against Haught. He has five open complaints, two of which are part of the statement of charges, she said.
Wolfpack

West Union, WV

#4 Oct 25, 2012
Will folks here who sucked up to Haught back off or do they give a dam? Can he be forced to drop his run for judge? If people are idiots enough to give him the majority of the vote, would his election be contested?
Really

Weston, WV

#5 Oct 25, 2012
He has to have a lisc. to sit as judge --- seems to me a combination of the two charges would be reason to remove him --- but then --- the Gov. would appoint --- What a waste!!!!

Seems it would be easier to just vote for Sweeny!!!
Guitar Man

United States

#6 Oct 25, 2012
Somebody needs to go to the Ritchie Courthouse and make photo copies of these (public record) court proceedings involving him--and then publish them in the local papers people ought to know this stuff about his conduct before they vote!
Read This

West Union, WV

#7 Oct 25, 2012
Really wrote:
He has to have a lisc. to sit as judge --- seems to me a combination of the two charges would be reason to remove him --- but then --- the Gov. would appoint --- What a waste!!!!
Seems it would be easier to just vote for Sweeny!!!
RIGHT ON REALLY !!! Thats the best solution The only person who would vote for Ira now would be ??? Jack Adams ???
Really

Weston, WV

#8 Oct 25, 2012
And Lewis Swann!!! LOL
Quiet Observer

United States

#9 Oct 25, 2012
Well, I've done my part to enlighten the folks I talk to in the county about Ira's activities. Everyone else should do the same. In my opinion, this man should never even come close to being elected as judge!

His ties to the mineral royalty wheelings and dealings alone should make him an unworthy candidate. Heck he's have to recuse himself from any cases having anything to do with property owners and mineral holders because of his conflict of interest.

And knowing he's already been disciplined by his own legal superiors and faces charges that, if found guilty, could get him disbarred, should be more than enough to raise an eyebrow of even the most loyal, party-line republican voter!

In my opinion, of course ! LOL
Read This

West Union, WV

#10 Oct 26, 2012
Some cross posting to Ritchie and Pleasants county wouldn't hurt. Game ON !
Go figure

Fairmont, WV

#11 Nov 12, 2012
He didn't stand a chance
mike133

Chesapeake, VA

#12 Jan 21, 2013

It appears that if you live in Ritchie. political favors are easy to come by. The Meth Labs are everywhere, 8% of population has a college degree the rest have drug problems. The politicians and wanna be politicians are all in it for reasons other than trying to make Ritchie Co. a better place. They need to get their kids out of trouble or buy their way into a public job or office. Favors are granted to retired law enforcement officers to get charges dropped for their family members,sure hope the judges wise up to to this an clean up Ritchie Co. This Challenge WV lawsuit to stop school closings. I see one person who seems to get her name out there. She has filed grievances against the state she works for and lost all otf them and is proven herself to be a trouble maker and not a very truthful person as a matter of record. Where do these people get of thinking they are better than anyone else and are entitled to special favors. Letters for participation in a sport but did not complete a full season, then want the coaches and Superintendents fired. They Should run her out of Ritchie Co. Most probably know her or know of her, she is married to an ex-state trooper with even less morals and integrity.
Wolfpack

West Union, WV

#13 Jan 21, 2013
mike133 wrote:
It appears that if you live in Ritchie. political favors are easy to come by. The Meth Labs are everywhere, 8% of population has a college degree the rest have drug problems. The politicians and wanna be politicians are all in it for reasons other than trying to make Ritchie Co. a better place. They need to get their kids out of trouble or buy their way into a public job or office. Favors are granted to retired law enforcement officers to get charges dropped for their family members,sure hope the judges wise up to to this an clean up Ritchie Co. This Challenge WV lawsuit to stop school closings. I see one person who seems to get her name out there. She has filed grievances against the state she works for and lost all otf them and is proven herself to be a trouble maker and not a very truthful person as a matter of record. Where do these people get of thinking they are better than anyone else and are entitled to special favors. Letters for participation in a sport but did not complete a full season, then want the coaches and Superintendents fired. They Should run her out of Ritchie Co. Most probably know her or know of her, she is married to an ex-state trooper with even less morals and integrity.
Except for some individuals you mention, imo you could be talking about Doddridge or many other counties in WV.
Curious

Snover, MI

#14 Jan 27, 2013
Does anyone know for a fact whether or not Ira Haught currently has his law license suspended? Perhaps direct me to an article link that provides that information? Am curious what the current status is of his license as well as the case where some of his clients had filed complaints against him. I'm sure it must be public info retrievable somewhere, but just was hoping someone would save me some time by pointing me to a source for the info. Thanks
Crappy Pappy

West Union, WV

#15 Jan 28, 2013
Try the WV Division of the American Bar Association.
dave

Coronado, CA

#16 Jan 29, 2013
west virginia state bar shows him as "active", ie he can practice law in west virginia. heres a link to his bar page

http://www.wvbar.org/members/memberdetails.as...

heres a link to the search page if anyone wants look up any other attorneys.

http://www.wvbar.org/members/search.aspx

ps - i know next to nothing about mr. haught other than what is posted in this thread. was actually on the board looking at some other stuff and saw that this one was active and decided to take a peak. some pretty incendiary info in this thread. wow.
Quiet Observer

Goshen, VA

#17 Jan 29, 2013
dave wrote:
west virginia state bar shows him as "active", ie he can practice law in west virginia. heres a link to his bar page
http://www.wvbar.org/members/memberdetails.as...
heres a link to the search page if anyone wants look up any other attorneys.
http://www.wvbar.org/members/search.aspx
ps - i know next to nothing about mr. haught other than what is posted in this thread. was actually on the board looking at some other stuff and saw that this one was active and decided to take a peak. some pretty incendiary info in this thread. wow.
Yes, comments on here may seem pretty incendiary, but here are some actual news links that tell the story about allegations about Mr. Haught's professional conduct.

http://wvrecord.com/news/246280-ritchie-attor...

http://wvrecord.com/news/255151-ritchie-judic...

On Dec. 5/6 there was an evidentiary hearing held (the one that was postponed back on Oct. 31 ...before the elections, interestingly enough)

And after both sides present their information, they are allowed 40 days to submit additional info for their side of the case and for the transcript of the evidentiary hearing to be transcribed by the court reporter. Then the record becomes closed and turned over to the WV Supreme Court for review and to consider appropriate sanctions. On Jan. 16th, the records were closed according to this process and it is now awaiting action from the WV court. A simple phone call to the WV Judiciplinary Discipline Board can easily verify this status.

For more information visit: http://www.courtswv.gov/legal-community/judic...

(Some of us do our homework before posting on this site and certainly others who post incediary comments should take the time to research the supporting information before rendering their opinions.) LOL

In this case, it would appear to me that (even though posting such incendiary remarks --such as what's found in this particular thread may appear reckless).... IN MY OPINION, it appears that these folks posting may be on to something ...IN MY OPINION, of course! LOL ;-)

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