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The Journal Gazette

  • Holtzclaw

Tuesday, June 26, 2018 1:00 am

Decatur attorney's license suspended

Faces charges of forging judge's signature

MATTHEW LEBLANC | The Journal Gazette

The license of a Decatur attorney was suspended for allegedly not cooperating with an Indiana Supreme Court investigation of claims of misconduct against her.

Chief Justice Loretta Rush signed an order last week suspending Jill N. Holtzclaw. The order says she has not cooperated since at least April, when the court's Disciplinary Commission filed paperwork asking her to show why she shouldn't be suspended for failing to reply to misconduct allegations.

Documents filed May 14 by the commission show she had not responded to the request, according to Rush's order.

Reached Monday, Holtzclaw said she had not seen the order. She said she wanted to discuss it with her attorney before responding to a reporter's questions.

The call was not returned.

The suspension comes after Holtzclaw was charged in February with forging a judge's signature on court documents for a woman seeking to divorce her husband.

Court documents filed in Adams Superior Court say sheriff's deputies investigated a document dated Sept. 15, 2017, that was supposed to be the last filing to make the divorce official. Later, the woman seeking the divorce had some questions and went to the Adams County clerk's office, where she was told the court had no record of anything being filed, a probable cause affidavit states.

Adams Circuit Court Judge Chad Kukelhan told investigators “there is no way he signed that document,” the affidavit says.

Holtzclaw has been charged with felony forgery, which carries a maximum penalty of 21/2 years in prison.

She was admitted to practice law in Indiana in October 2012, state records show. She operated Holtzclaw Legal Services, 6061 W. U.S. 224.

A plea hearing is scheduled for July 11, but it is not clear whether a plea agreement is in place. Adams County Prosecutor Jeremy Brown did not return a call Monday.