Monday, November 18, 2002
Wallace Out on Bail With Help of Court Official’s Wife
By ROBERT GREENE, Staff Writer
Ex-lawyer Angela Wallace was released from jail on $45,000 bail Friday after bond was secured by the wife of the Los Angeles Superior Court’s top financial officer.
Superior Court Deputy Executive Officer William Mitchell did not testify but was present in Div. 30 with his wife, Shelle Mitchell, at the bail hearing for Wallace, who was arrested in court Tuesday on charges of suborning perjury and conspiracy.
Shelle Mitchell told Commissioner Jeffrey Harkavy that she has been a friend of Wallace for more than 30 years. She presented a check, bank account data and trust deeds to secure bond, and said she was joint holder on the documents with her husband.
“Has any of this money come from Angela Wallace?” Harkavy asked. Mitchell responded that it did not, and told Harkavy that Wallace would not be reimbursing her for anything.
Mitchell identified herself as a healthcare consultant for a private company.
Harkavy had William Mitchell stand, then noted that the two men did not know each other.
The bail amount had been set previously, but Wallace and her counsel, Milton Grimes, had to show that the money being posted was not obtained feloniously, as required under Penal Code Sec. 1275.1
The bail hold applied to Wallace because she also has been charged with grand theft by embezzlement, forgery and perjury. She was in court for a pretrial hearing on that matter when District Attorney investigators arrested her on the new charges Tuesday.
Trial is scheduled to begin on the grand theft charges today in Dept. 53, district attorney spokeswoman Jane Robison said. Wallace’s co-defendant, pro per Timothy Mack—who over the course of a half-dozen pretrial hearings repeatedly rejected Judge Alice Altoon’s warnings about the perils of representing himself—has now asked for a lawyer. But Robison said trial is expected to begin on time.
Wallace, 41, had been free on $150,000 bail while awaiting her trial with Mack, 47, on charges that they stole $380,044 in insurance proceeds from the two sons of a Los Angeles police officer.
The officer, Shiree Arrant, died in 2000. Howard Byrdsong, 20, and his 18-year-old brother, Jontrae, hired Wallace to represent them but complained to prosecutors when they didn’t get their insurance money. They were later shot to death by a gunman posing as a postal worker.
The killings are still under investigation.
Wallace has a long history of State Bar discipline. She resigned last year with charges pending.
Last week’s arrest stems from allegations that Wallace convinced a woman named Jackie Parker to testify under oath at a 1998 State Bar discipline hearing that Parker, not Wallace, stole $250,000 from a client trust fund.
Parker identified herself in the hearing as Naomi Campbell, Robison said. Parker has been charged with perjury and false personation.
William Mitchell could not be reached for comment Friday.
He became the court’s finance officer earlier this year, and has had a key role in responding to a budget crisis that led the court to close courtrooms, eliminate bench officer positions and lay off more than 200 employees.
Copyright 2002, Metropolitan News Company