Lawyer's award rescinded after embezzlement charges

By Cara Bailey | Oct 4, 2007

CHARLESTON - The actions of a Clarksburg lawyer has caused the West Virginia State Bar to rescind his "Young Lawyer of the Year" award.

Attorney Christopher A. Davis accepted the award in April at the State Bar's annual dinner. He was charged with eight counts of embezzlement by mid-May.

According to the State Bar Executive Director Tom Tinder, Davis was chosen from several nominations because of his heavy involvement in community service. Community service is a major portion of the award.

"His (application) was quite extensive in telling about the various programs and activities in which he was involved," Tinder told the Charleston Daily Mail.

The award was announced in the May-June issue of the State Bar's West Virginia Lawyer Magazine.

However, by the time the issue reached most subscribers, Davis has been charged with eight counts of embezzlement from the Hampshire County Building Commission. Davis was a former chairman of the county's Building Commission.

In the September-October issue of West Virginia Lawyer, it was announced that Davis' award had been revoked.

Davis is to face charges at a November court hearing in Hampshire County.

According to Tinder, members of the Bar committee were outraged because they believe Davis knew he was going to be charged when he accepted the award.

Tinder said there will not be an award for 2007, but the Executive committee members have decided to bring it back next year.

To be eligible to be considered for the award, which was first given four years ago, an attorney must be a West Virginia lawyer who has been licensed for less than 10 years.

Davis could not be reached for comment.

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