BEFORE THE HEARING BOARD
OF THE
ILLINOIS ATTORNEY REGISTRATION
AND
DISCIPLINARY COMMISSION

In the Matter of:

MARK ROBERT MCGOVERN,

Attorney-Respondent, 

No. 6276279.

 

Commission No. 07 CH 52

FILED - June 6, 2007

COMPLAINT

Jerome Larkin, Administrator of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission, by his attorneys, Wendy J. Muchman and Peter L. Apostol, pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 761(d), complains of Respondent, Mark Robert McGovern, who was licensed to practice law in the State of Illinois on January 2, 2002, and alleges that Respondent has engaged in the following conduct which tends to defeat the administration of justice or to bring the courts or the legal profession into disrepute. In support, the Administrator states:

Count I
Criminal Conduct by Assaulting and Intimidating a Flight Attendant
in violation of 49 U.S.C. sec. 46504

1. On November 25, 2005, Respondent was present on United Airlines flight number 1502 from Orlando, Florida to Washington, D.C. At some point during the flight, Respondent engaged in threatening and disruptive behavior towards the flight crew. Respondent was arrested by federal air marshals, and the flight crew diverted the aircraft to Charlotte, North Carolina.

2. On December 13, 2005, a one-count indictment was filed against Respondent in the United States District Court for the Western District of North Carolina. The indictment charged Respondent with assaulting and intimidating a flight attendant in violation of 49 U.S.C. sec. 46504. The matter was docketed as United States of America v. Mark Robert McGovern and given case number 05 CR 405. A certified copy of the indictment is attached hereto as Exhibit 1.

3. At all times alleged in this count, 49 U.S.C. sec. 46504 provided that:

An individual on an aircraft in the special aircraft jurisdiction of the United States who, by assaulting or intimidating a flight crew member or flight attendant of the aircraft, interferes with the performance of the duties of the member or attendant or lessens the ability of the member or attendant to perform those duties, or attempts or conspires to do such an act, shall be fined under title 18, imprisoned for not more than 20 years, or both….

4. On January 26, 2006, Respondent pled guilty to assaulting and intimidating a flight attendant in violation of 49 U.S.C. sec. 46504.

5. On May 22, 2006, the court sentenced Respondent to seven months of incarceration, followed by a three-year period of supervised release. The court also ordered Respondent to pay $7,339 in restitution to United Airlines, as well as a $100 assessment. A certified copy of the judgment of conviction is attached hereto as Exhibit 2.

6. As a result of the conviction described above, Respondent has engaged in the following misconduct:

  1. committing criminal acts that reflect adversely on the lawyer's honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as a lawyer in other respects in violation of Rule 8.4(a)(3) of the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct, by assaulting and intimidating a flight attendant in violation of 49 U.S.C. sec. 46504;

  2. conduct which is prejudicial to the administration of justice in violation of Rule 8.4(a)(5); and

  3. conduct which tends to defeat the administration of justice or to bring the courts or the legal profession into disrepute in violation of Supreme Court Rule 770.

Count II
Criminal Conduct by Violating Supervised Release
in violation of 18 U.S.C. sec. 3583(e)(3)

1-5. The Administrator repeats and realleges the allegations of paragraphs 1 through 5 in Count I, above, as if they were set forth in detail hereunder.

6. On or about June 26, 2006, Respondent was released from prison and thereafter assigned to the McLeod Center, a federal halfway house, for a period of eighteen months. Respondent participated in a work-release program where he was required to return to the McLeod Center every night after work.

7. At all times alleged in this count, 18 U.S.C. sec. 3583(e)(3) provided, in relevant part, as follows:

(e) Modification of Conditions or Revocation. - The court may …

(3) revoke a term of supervised release, and require the defendant to serve in prison all or part of the term of supervised release authorized by statute for the offense that resulted in such term of supervised release without credit for time previously served on postrelease supervision, if the court, pursuant to the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure applicable to revocation of probation or supervised release, finds by a preponderance of the evidence that the defendant violated a condition of supervised release….

8. On November 11, 2006, Respondent did not return to the McLeod Center after work, nor did he advise his probation officer of his location. While away without permission, Respondent engaged in the use of an illegal substance, namely cocaine.

9. On November 12, 2006, Respondent returned to the McLeod Center, and subsequently admitted to the United States Probation Officer that he had used cocaine during his unauthorized absence.

10. On November 14, 2006, the United States Probation Officer filed a petition alleging that Respondent had violated his supervised release by failing to report to the McLeod Center after work, and by using illegal narcotics. A certified copy of the Petition for Warrant or Summons for Offender under Supervision is attached hereto as Exhibit 3.

11. On December 8, 2006, the court revoked Respondent's supervised release and sentenced him to an additional eleven months in prison. A certified copy of the judgment of conviction is attached as Exhibit 4.

12. As a result of the conviction described above, Respondent has engaged in the following misconduct:

  1. committing criminal acts that reflect adversely on the lawyer's honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as a lawyer in other respects in violation of Rule 8.4(a)(3) of the Illinois Rules of Professional Conduct, by violating the conditions of his supervised release, in violation of 18 U.S.C. sec. 3583(e)(3);

  2. conduct which is prejudicial to the administration of justice in violation of Rule 8.4(a)(5); and

  3. conduct which tends to defeat the administration of justice or to bring the courts or the legal profession into disrepute in violation of Supreme Court Rule 770.

WHEREFORE, the Administrator respectfully requests that this matter be assigned to a panel of the Hearing Board, that a hearing be held pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 761, and that the panel make findings of fact, conclusions of fact and law, and a recommendation for such discipline as is warranted.

Wendy J. Muchman
Peter L. Apostol
Counsel for the Administrator
One Prudential Plaza
130 East Randolph Drive, Suite 1500
Chicago, Illinois 60601-6219
Telephone: (312) 565-2600
Respectfully submitted,

Jerome Larkin, Administrator
Attorney Registration and
Disciplinary Commission

By:  Peter L. Apostol