Lawyer Convicted After Threatening Workers With Gun

, The Connecticut Law Tribune

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A Stratford attorney who has been convicted of disorderly conduct for threatening to shoot at two water company employees will decide in the near future if he wants to appeal the ruling.

The attorney, Laurence Parnoff, 72, is also under scrutiny from state grievance officials. Patricia King, the chief disciplinary counsel, said once her office gets a copy of documents related to the conviction, it will file a presentment, which is a complaint to the judge.

"It's up to the judge," King said, referring to whether Parnoff will be disciplined. "She heard the trial. She heard the sentencing. Whether the judge would view that as affecting his ability to practice law, I don't know."

Judge Maureen Dennis sentenced Parnoff to a three-month suspended sentence with a year of probation. She fined him $500 and agreed to order the anger management as well as the letter of apology. Parnoff is being represented by Bob Gulash, of Gulash & Riccio in Bridgeport, who declined to comment on the case, other than to say he would be meeting with his client to decide whether to appeal.

The case stemmed from an incident involving Aquarion water company employees, who had been doing routine fire hydrant inspections in Stratford in July 2011. They saw a missing cap from the hydrant in front of Parnoff's home. A hose attached to the hydrant led them to a goat pen.

When the water company employees began looking for the cap to the hydrant, Parnoff demanded they leave his property. When they told him they were going to continue to look for the cap, he threated to shoot them. At his Jan. 21 sentencing for disorderly conduct in Bridgeport Superior Court, Parnoff said he was trying to protect his family.

Judge Dennis told Parnoff that his response to the water company employees was "irrational" and out of proportion to what was occurring. According to the Connecticut Post, Assistant State's Attorney Michael DeJoseph said he was troubled that Parnoff took the case to trial instead of accepting a conditional discharge.

No charges were brought against Parnoff for the use of the hydrant water for his goats.

Fee Cap Case

According to lawyers.com website, Parnoff's practice consists of a general practice as well as personal injury and workers' compensation law. He has been practicing for more than 40 years.

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