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DA makes plea deal for himself

Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel and 3rd Judicial District Attorney  Enter Into Probation Agreement

DENVER — Colorado’s Presiding Disciplinary Judge Wednesday, Jan., 28 approved a six-month suspension of 3rd Judicial District Attorney Frank Ruybalid’s law license as part of an agreement between Mr. Ruybalid and the Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel. The suspension is stayed pending successful completion of the robust audit and practice monitoring conditions. Ruybalid was ordered to pay costs incurred in conjunction with this matter in the amount of $23,043.65 within thirty-five days of the date of the order. “Our office’s goal is to help protect the public, and today’s agreement helps ensure the people of Colorado receive the best representation in criminal matters before the 3rd Judicial District Courts,” said Jim Coyle, Attorney Regulation Counsel. The audit will include review of the office’s filing system, including the creation, logging, documentation and tracking of all cases; the office’s evidence collections/discovery/disclosure system; and the office’s system of ensuring compliance with court orders and calendar deadlines. The audit shall

require that effective systems be put into place. The practice monitoring conditions shall require caseload reviews by the practice monitor involving at least 32 hours per month for the first six months; and reduced amounts every six months thereafter. Mr. Ruybalid shall also be required to pay costs and attend an attorney ethics school. On Jan. 30, Ruybalid told the Huerfano World Journal that he was looking forward to getting the monitor in place and hoped the new conditions would allow him to continue in office until his term is completed. If any condition of probation is violated, Mr. Ruybalid will be subject to the six-month suspension of his license and be required to petition for reinstatement at the conclusion of the suspension period. An investigation by the Office of Attorney Regulation Counsel found that in numerous cases beginning in 2010, Ruybalid failed to comply with court orders and failed to make proper and timely disclosures to the defense including scientific test results, witness criminal histories, exhibits and expert witness testimony. His actions resulted in numerous criminal cases being dismissed in the 3rd Judicial District Courts, which include Huerfano and Las Animas counties. In Wednesday’s agreement, Ruybalid stipulated to 13 violations of the Colorado Rules of Professional Conduct, including failing to competently represent the State of Colorado, engaging in conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice, and failing to properly supervise assistant district attorneys.

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