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Wyoming law enforcement officer gives false testimony in case against hemp farmers; Cheyenne lawyer censured


CASPER, Wyo. — The Wyoming Supreme Court has censured Cheyenne attorney David E. Singleton due to his actions in a case against a pair of hemp farmers in the state as well as two individuals who worked at their hemp farm in Albin, Wyoming near the Nebraska border.

The property of Debra Palm-Egle and Joshua Egle was raided by Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigations agents in Nov. 2019, according to WyoFile.

Singleton acted as a prosecutor in the case and alleged that the two hemp farmers and the two people working at the hemp farm “were engaged in a conspiracy to manufacture, deliver, or possess marijuana; possession of marijuana with intent to deliver a felony; felony possession of marijuana; and cultivation of marijuana, a misdemeanor,” the Wyoming State Bar said on Wednesday.

During a preliminary hearing, a law enforcement officer provided false testimony “with respect to the material in the case” and Singleton was aware the testimony was false “but failed to bring the falsity of such testimony to the court’s attention.”

The presiding judge tossed the charges at the conclusion of the preliminary hearing, finding “there was not sufficient evidence of intent on the part of the defendants to possess, distribute, or conspire regarding marijuana,” the Wyoming State Bar said.

“One of the defense attorneys brought concerns regarding Singleton’s conduct to the attention of Bar Counsel for the Wyoming State Bar,” the release adds. “As a result of Bar Counsel’s investigation, the parties reached a stipulation that Singleton had committed two violations of his obligation of candor to the court and agreed that a public censure was the appropriate sanction for such conduct.”

“In considering the stipulated resolution, the Board of Professional Responsibility (BPR) of the Wyoming State Bar was satisfied that Singleton acted with knowledge but not with intent to deceive the court in failing to correct the law enforcement officer’s false testimony. Therefore, the BPR approved the parties’ stipulated resolution and recommended that the Wyoming Supreme Court issue a public censure of Singleton. In adopting the BPR’s recommendation, the Court ordered Singleton to pay an administrative fee of $750.00 and costs in the amount of $50.00 to the Wyoming State Bar.”

The Wyoming Supreme Court’s Order of Public Censure is available online.