Nothing beats watching a bunch of lawyers demonstrate the dismissive gesture of "air-wanking." It happened several times during yesterday's hearing in front of the panel of three lawyers from the Kansas
Board for Discipline of Attorneys, whose job it is to recommend appropriate discipline for Kimberly Ireland.
Ireland is the attorney who accused Johnson County District
Court Judge Kevin Moriarty of masturbating during a mediation
session in her divorce from then-husband Kevin Ireland (detailed
in the June 10, 2010, edition of The Pitch as the "Worst.
On October 3, 2007, Ireland submitted a complaint to the Commission on Judicial Qualifications, claiming that "the majority of the time we were in the courtroom, it appeared as if Judge Moriarty was masturbating under the bench."
The Judicial Commission found that Ireland's accusations against the judge
were baseless (though Moriarty was scolded for his use of profanity), and the head judge of the Commission referred the matter to the Disciplinary Administrator's Office because of the "serious nature of [Ireland's] accusations and the lack of support for them." Ireland voluntarily relinquished her
license to practice law on March 1 of this year.
Ireland appeared pale and wore a dour, black suit. Under questioning from her attorney, James Morrow, Ireland admitted that her word choice in her complaint had been a mistake. She said she'd been upset by Moriarty's use of profanity during the September 2007 mediation (he'd yelled that Ireland and her law partner, Aaron McKee, were "wasting [his] fucking time") and references to her sex life (there was discussion of whether or not she was "boinking" her law partner).
"It could not have been that [the judge was masturbating]," she explained tearfully -- one of the many occasions that Ireland cried during her testimony. "I was to his right, I saw his arm was moving up and down, but it could not have been the whole time. Maybe he was making an obscene gesture, maybe he was tired of me, maybe he was itching his leg, but by that time ... it was overwhelming and I think my perception, it was just off."
Ireland blamed her troubles on the anxiety caused by her long and acrimonious divorce case, her health problems and the media. But in cross examining Ireland, Disciplinary Administrator Stan Hazlett pointed out that Ireland had ample time to clear her mind of confusion in the two years between when she filed her complaint with the Judicial Commission in 2007 and September 25, 2009, when she filed a federal lawsuit against Moriarty that repeated those same accusations and added new ones. (Ireland dismissed the federal lawsuit on December 15,
Ireland said her mental state had improved in recent months and she and her ex-husband get along very well now. She mentioned that she was hired by the MajorWestcott Group as an attorney recruiter after her license was suspended, but she was fired in June after her divorce and disciplinary action was detailed in The Pitch. She has since gone back to school; she told the panel that, if her license to practice law were reinstated, she hoped to practice medical law.
date. The fate of Ireland's legal career will ultimately be determined by the Kansas Supreme Court.