A Wichita Falls attorney with a history of violations will be suspended from practicing law for a year beginning Friday because of professional misconduct, according to a judgement from the State Bar of Texas.
Bruce Harris, a well-known lawyer who has been active in local politics, mishandled a DWI case, according to the findings in the Nov. 8 judgement.
Harris didn’t file a response or show up for Oct. 27 proceedings for a complaint against him. A State Bar panel found the allegations were true and ordered him suspended in a default judgement.
Harris, 54, must notify his clients and return any money and other property belonging to them. He also has to notify judges and opposing attorneys in his cases about his suspension.
He is prohibited from calling himself an “attorney” or “counselor,” performing any legal services or accepting legal fees directly or indirectly during his active suspension.
He is also ordered to surrender his law license and permanent State Bar card to disciplinary officials in Austin.
Attempts to contact Harris on Thursday evening for comment were not immediately successful.
The grounds for his suspension stem from a woman’s DWI case. Harris was hired and paid $1,500 to represent her on June 18, 2020, according to the judgement. He failed to explain the case well enough so she could make informed decisions about the representation.
Harris is a former chairman of the Wichita County Republican Party and has representing clients in numerous cases.
His suspension is for 24 months, but it is partially probated. Harris is prohibited from practicing law in Texas from Friday until Nov. 29, 2024.
If he fulfills requirements, a one-year probated suspension will begin Nov. 30, 2024, and end Nov. 30, 2025. Harris can practice law during the probated suspension.