State Legal Panel Says Laramie County D.A. Should Pay $91,000 For Hearing Expenses

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By Jim Angell, Cowboy State Daily

A group that oversees Wyoming’s attorneys is asking that Laramie County’s district attorney be required to pay more than $91,000 in expenses for the hearing into allegations against her.

The Board of Professional Responsibility, in its recommendation to the Wyoming Supreme Court, asked that Leigh Anne Manlove be required to repay the Wyoming State Bar almost $91,197 for expenses related to the eight-day hearing by the Board of Professional Responsibility.

The recommendation is one of several included in the BPR’s final report on allegations Manlove has failed to competently carry out the duties of her office. The report also recommends that Manlove be barred from the practice of law. 

The Wyoming Supreme Court will decide on whether the BPR’s recommendations will be followed.

An affidavit filed with the BPR’s report on allegations against Manlove showed that the largest share of the expenses, almost $64,636, was for lodging, meals, meeting space and audio-visual needs at Cheyenne’s Little America, where the hearing was held.

The affidavit was released Tuesday along with other documents in response to a motion by Manlove to make the documents in her case a matter of public record.

According to the affidavit, meeting space at Little America for the hearings ran at least $1,500 per day. On one day of the hearing, Feb. 4, the cost for the meeting room increased to $2,600.

A second, smaller meeting room set up for meals for BPR members and staff cost another $350 per day and wireless internet service, with a download speed of 25 megabytes per second, cost $825 per day.

Transcripts of the proceedings cost $12,882, the affidavit said, and expenses for the special bar counsel, the attorney in charge of the investigation into allegations against Manlove, were $9,332.

The February hearing was held to allow the BPR to study the allegations against Manlove and determine what action to recommend to the Wyoming Supreme Court.

The charges against Manlove, elected to office in 2018, included allegations she exaggerated the impact of budget cuts on her office to dismiss almost 1,000 cases from Laramie County courts.

The special counsel for the state bar, W.W. Reeves, began his investigation into the allegations after all seven of Laramie County’s judges wrote a letter expressing concerns about her performance in office.

Manlove has until May 2 to submit her response to the BPR’s recommendations.

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