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State Supreme Court reprimands Brandt

A Pierce County lawyer has been reprimanded by the Wisconsin Supreme Court and assessed $13,690 for failing to supervise an employee who embezzled $104,000 and for running up five drunk driving convictions.

In a 17-page opinion filed last week, the Supreme Court rejected an Office of Lawyer Regulation recommendation Warren Lee Brandt, 58, be suspended from the practice of law for 60 days. Instead, on a 6-1 decision, the court voted to publicly reprimand Brandt and order him to pay the full cost of the proceedings against him.

"A significant amount of time has passed since the occurrence of the events that gave rise to this disciplinary proceeding. The misconduct at issue in this case occurred between 2003 and 2005," says the decision. "Since that time, Attorney Brandt has taken positive steps to turn his life around and atone for his bad behavior."

While noting Brandt has been reprimanded by the Supreme Court three times before and calling his multiple drunk driving convictions "a serious failing," the court decided a jail term he has already served, the reprimand and assessment of costs are punishment enough.

Brandt was also ordered to refrain from using alcohol and other non-prescription drugs, undergo another alcohol and drug assessment within 120 days, hire an outside accountant to review his trust and business accounts quarterly and attend a trust account training session.

Brandt didn't return a call for comment on the decision before deadline Monday.

For more please read the June 17 print version of the Herald.