Minister and “People’s Advocate” Is Charged with UPL

You’d think if you were already in jail on two charges of unauthorized practice of law, you’d be extra careful not to go down that particular road again. But the Charleston Post Courier reports that while David Lee Edward Mitchell was a guest of the Charleston County jail, he allegedly decided to offer his self-professed legal expertise to a fellow inmate – again.

Mitchell is a minister who allegedly told at least three people he is a paralegal. Since Mitchell is not a lawyer, despite running an enterprise called The People’s Advocate, it is illegal for him to practice law or give legal advice. (Maybe no one told him paralegals can’t give legal advice either.)

Allegedly accepting $300 to assist a fellow inmate, who was not satisfied with his current court-appointed lawyer, led to Mitchell’s third UPL charge. (Perhaps in hindsight, the dissatisfied customer now better appreciates the fact that at least his court-appointed representative is a real lawyer.)

As a result of the new charge, Mitchell’s total bond has been increased to $150,000. The Courier reports:

As a condition of the bond, Mitchell also cannot appear within one block of any jail in South Carolina, or give advice under the guise of being a lawyer, paralegal or legal expert. 

This language confuses me a bit. If Mitchell cannot pay his bond, or is jailed again on allegations of UPL, how can he avoid the restriction not to appear within a mile of any South Carolina jail?

Just sayin’ .

Sources: Live 5 News; Charleston Post Courier

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