Former district attorney says she respects board, will respect any discipline handed down for misconduct
Nearly two years after the Disciplinary Board launched an investigation into the alleged misconduct of former District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court suspended her law license for one year and one day.
The suspension is effective March 10.
Parks Miller, who opened her own law firm last year, would need to secure approval from the state Supreme Court for reinstatement. She is also required to pay the cost of the investigation, according to the PA Supreme Court’s order that was released Friday.
“I am glad the wrangling about it is over,” Parks Miller wrote in an emailed statement.
She was accused of engaging in ex parte communications with Centre County judges, along with the creation, dissemination and use of a fake Facebook page to “snoop” on suspected bath salt dealers.
“(Parks Miller) betrayed the faith and trust of the public by engaging in misconduct in her official capacity, including dishonest acts, and this factor weighs heavily in the assessment of discipline,” Dion Rassias wrote on behalf of the board in December.
Rassias also wrote that Parks Miller “crossed the boundaries of professional ethics,” despite her intent to curb criminal activity in Centre County.
In response, Parks Miller said she was “regretful about any mistakes I made,” but the board criticized her failing to balance the interest of alleged victims, the accused, the general public and the larger consequences of her actions.
“All of these actions subjected the district attorney’s office and Centre County court to scrutiny and suspicion by the public,” Rassias wrote in December. “(Parks Miller) failed to acknowledge the seriousness of her conduct and failed to accept responsibility.”
When Parks Miller missed the deadline to file her response, she effectively admitted the allegations. In her statement, she said she knew early on the result “would be equally as unfair as the process.”
She also said her suspension was “mysteriously quadrupled” after a hearing committee recommended a three-month suspension in August.
“I am surprised and disappointed that the Supreme Court refused to even hear my case. My case with the board was mixed with two emails I admitted to. One trying to stop a rapist from being illegally released where a judge dropped parties — not me — and some partial texts sentences of unknown context,” Parks Miller wrote. “I was not able to see what anyone said in response or challenge the actual analysis, which I had planned to do. I was not permitted to defend against those claims and therefore they were presumed true.”
She also referred to the suspension as an “interruption” and said she’s financially prepared for the length of her suspension.
“I started a successful practice after leaving the DA’s office and will continue to build on that and serve clients who need a strong advocate after this interruption in my career,” Parks Miller wrote. “I prepared for this — lining up 2019 with other jobs in the legal arena that do not require a license. I will continue to appear on television as a legal analyst and am working on other legal production projects that delve into the process of, ironically, breakdowns in the justice system. I remain alarmed at a system that does not allow a full defense in any setting. I will take the next 30 days to place my clients in other great hands and focus on pursuing my other career goals.”