Rapides DA Put on Probation by state supreme court


The Rapides parish district attorney is disciplined by the state supreme court.

The state Supreme Court placed Phillip Terrell on probation for five years for allowing a secretary to do legal work and reportedly steal funds that belonged to a client.

Terrell declined to comment — but he issued a brief statement which says his secretary of several years is responsible for the bad acts. Though Terrell acknowledges he failed to monitor the secretary — he says he cooperated with state officials. If Terrell again is charged with a violation — the state Supreme Court could suspend him from practicing law for a year and a day.

His entire statement may be read below:

I have been disciplined by the Louisiana Supreme Court for events that occurred in early 2013.

I failed to monitor all the activities of my secretary who had been with me for several years.  As a result, that person improperly accessed my client trust account and spent a small amount of money.  Immediately upon learning of this situation, I
personally replaced all funds that belonged to the third parties and fully cooperated with the Office of Disciplinary Counsel.

I agree with the two dissenting Justices’ opinions that the discipline was harsh.  However, I accepted the discipline recommended by the ODC so as not to cause a distraction from what we are attempting to accomplish in the Rapides Parish District Attorney’s Office.

J. Phillip Terrell
Rapides Parish District Attorney