Category Archives: Legal

Case, Moses & Zimmerman partners go separate ways; Moses & Pate LLC forms

WICHITA — Last month, Medical Development Management announced it will be moving into the 6,500-square-foot space that Case, Moses & Zimmerman occupies at the Garvey Center, and the law firm’s partners said they were exploring alternatives.

“Sometimes firms split up because there’s animosity,” Moses says. “That’s not the case here.”

Here’s what they’ve decided: Attorneys David Moses and Chris Pate are forming Moses & Pate LLC. Attorney Linda Priest, who is currently with Case, Moses & Zimmerman, is joining them in the approximately 2,300 square feet MDM currently occupies next door.

Bankruptcy attorney Bill Zimmerman is moving to Eron Law, a firm that has an emphasis in bankruptcy.

“It’s a perfect fit for Bill,” Moses says. “He’ll be continuing to provide his bankruptcy specialty.”

Attorney Mike Case, who has had the firm’s Kansas City office, will be of counsel with Moses & Pate as he transitions to retirement.

“He’ll be working towards retirement,” Moses says.

Attorney Susan Saidian is retiring as of April 11.

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Jerseys Grill and Bar temporarily closes due to lapsed liquor license, construction

WICHITA — Jerseys Grill and Bar near K-96 and Webb Road has temporarily closed due to a lapsed liquor license that was “just a mistake.”

“It was my fault,” says general manager Tim Hadsell. “I didn’t realize it’s a two-year license and just missed the renewal date.”

Hadsell is the third general manager for the 2-year-old Jerseys.

He says while waiting for the new license, which should come next week, he took the opportunity to do some remodeling that he’s been planning.

“We’ve been trying to get it done I’d say for the past month,” Hadsell says. “It never seemed like the right time.”

He says the business still had “a Johnny Carino’s feel” from when it was that restaurant, and he wanted to change that.

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Complete Landscaping files Chapter 11, is hopeful for large new contract

WICHITA — A Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing is the latest twist in what’s been an ongoing financial and legal struggle for Complete Landscaping Systems.

“I’ve taken a look at the gross revenues of the company, which are pretty substantial,” attorney David Eron says. “I think we’ve got plenty to work with to turn this thing around.”

In early September, it looked like Complete Landscaping had sold most of its assets to Wichita attorney Rick Hodge, who said he wanted to expand his Yard Concerns landscaping business.

Eron says what happened with Hodge is “a sensitive question.”

“Bottom line is there never was a final agreement with Rick Hodge,” Eron says.

“It was just immediately apparent that this deal with Rick was absolutely not going to come anywhere close to taking care of the financial issues the company had,” he says. “I personally told him the deal was done, and it was not going to go forward.”

The first hearing in the bankruptcy case is Wednesday.

“There’s certain things we have to do in order to continue operating the business,” Eron says. The point is to “try to get some time where we don’t have to worry about all the lawsuits.”

There are about 35 lawsuits again Complete Landscaping, mostly from local and some out-of-state vendors.

“Really, most of the debt problems generally are fallout from the Bank of America contract,” Eron says.

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Despite verbiage in legal filing, Community Bank of Wichita is not selling

WICHITA — Steve Carr knew before he even looked at the paper this morning that he’d have some questions to answer.

There’s a legal notice in today’s paper that makes it appear that theater owner Bill Warren and lawyers Mark and Andrew Hutton are buying Community State Bancshares, parent company of Community Bank of Wichita, but that’s not the case.

“Nothing’s really changing,” says Carr, chairman and president. “The bank isn’t being sold.”

The bank is buying back stock from some stockholders, one of whom died and one of whom got divorced, and was forced to do a public notice about it.

“It’s a totally regulatory deal,” Carr says.

It’s one that he didn’t expect, either.

“We said, ‘Really? Seriously?’” upon learning there would have to be a notice.

The legal filing says Luxury Development Partners intends to apply for permission to get control of the bank, “and, thus, to become a bank holding company.”

Warren and the Huttons are owners of Luxury Development.

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LewJene Schneider files appeal on theft and criminal damages conviction

WICHITA — Watercress developer and lawyer LewJene Schneider has filed an appeal of her conviction last month in Maize Municipal Court on theft and criminal damage charges.

The charges stemmed from a long-running dispute that Schneider has with Fiddler’s Cove developer Bob Scott over real estate signs.

“She has requested a jury trial,” says lawyer Jess Hoeme, who is representing Schneider along with Steve Joseph.

A trial is scheduled for Oct. 9.

Property owners file lawsuit against Casey Bachrodt claiming mismanagement and breach of fiduciary responsibility

WICHITA — Various entities, all partially owned by Summit Holdings LLC, have filed a lawsuit in Sedgwick County District Court against developer Casey Bachrodt.

Summit’s five shareholders also own Key Construction.

The suit claims Bachrodt mismanaged six properties in which he also was an owner.

“We feel like he didn’t fulfill his fiduciary responsibility,” says John Walker, Summit administrator and member.

Bachrodt didn’t return calls for comment.

The relationship between Bachrodt and Summit goes back at least a decade.

Starting in October, Summit began removing Bachrodt from managing its properties, including two strip centers in Andover, one in Emporia, one in Texas and two office buildings on and near Rock Road in Wichita.

Walker says Bachrodt didn’t market the properties properly or do a good job keeping tenants or being responsive to them.

“It’s been an ongoing problem, and we weren’t able to control it and get all the details we needed until we took (the properties) over,” Walker says.

Builders Inc. now manages the properties, which Walker says “has been a very good move for us.”



Watercress developer LewJene Schneider convicted of theft and criminal damage

WICHITA — Watercress developer and lawyer LewJene Schneider was convicted of theft and criminal damage in Maize Municipal Court on Wednesday.

The charges stem from a long-running dispute that Schneider has with Fiddler’s Cove developer Bob Scott over real estate signs.

In February, Scott told Have You Heard? that he placed directional signs on city property by the Watercress development near 37th and Maize Road in order to help people find Fiddler’s Cove, which is accessible only through Watercress.

Scott says he complained to police when the signs began disappearing and eventually started calling daily to complain. Finally, he says, police used a surveillance camera in September to figure out that Schneider took the signs.

Lawyer Jess Hoeme, who is representing Schneider along with Steve Joseph, says his client contacted the city of Maize several times regarding the signs, which he says Scott placed illegally.

“No one from the city of Maize ever removed them,” Hoeme says.

“Bob Scott, the victim, admitted that he did not have permission to put those signs on Watercress property, nor did he have permission to put them on city property,” Hoeme says. “He just did it.”

Scott says it was “common practice” for people to put up signs without permission.

“Doesn’t make it right, but everyone was doing it – primarily LewJene,” he says.

Hoeme says the judge didn’t rule on whether Scott placed the signs legally or not. He only ruled on Schneider removing them.

“The judge doesn’t believe that even if those signs were unlawfully placed on her property that she had the right to remove them,” Hoeme says.

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You don’t say

“Usually after the first couple of songs, it’s incumbent upon someone to yell out, ‘Keep your day job.’”

Dan Monnat on the Crime Doctors, a band made up of criminal defense attorneys, who are reuniting Thursday at Loft 150 for a Leukemia & Lymphoma Society benefit

Reeg Lawyers opens Wichita office

WICHITA — St. Louis-based Reeg Lawyers has expanded to Wichita.

“It just seemed to us that there’s a lot of opportunity out there,” Kurt Reeg says.

“I do a lot of work with farm and ag groups and trade associations,” he says. “I was just getting feedback from some of our clients that they thought there was a need for some more experienced legal talent out there that knew the ag industry.”

Reeg has practiced law for 32 years. His firm, which includes seven lawyers, is not quite nine years old.

Initially there will be two lawyers in the firm’s 2,900-square-foot Wichita office at River Park Place, which is at 727 N. Waco.

The practice will include agriculture and farm law, environmental law and alternative dispute resolution among other things.

Reeg, who opened the office Monday, also opened a third one in Center, Mo. He’s been looking to expand for a while.

“I only want to do that when it makes sense.”

He decided that offering his services to Wichitans makes sense because “they wanted more help, and we had help to offer.”


Cummings & Cummings law firm to once again have two Cummings attorneys

WICHITA — Cummings & Cummings is once again going to have a Cummings and a Cummings.

Bill and Nika Cummings started the law firm, which is at 129 E. Second St., in 1998. Nika Cummings left more than four years ago to work as a public defender. Now, she’s returning.

“She’s had really great success as a public defender,” Bill Cummings says of his wife.

She first worked for the Sedgwick County public defender’s office and then the county’s conflict office.

Cummings says his wife won 10 acquittals out of her last 12 cases, “which is just unheard of really.”

When Nika Cummings previously was at the firm, she worked part time there and as Mulvane’s prosecutor while also raising the couple’s four children. Once the kids were in school, she began her full-time public work.

Now, Bill Cummings says, his wife would like to try private practice again – and have the often more lucrative salary that accompanies it.

It’s fine by him, especially since they regularly confer about cases anyway.

“She’s just really good at what she does,” Cummings says. “She’s not only persuasive in the courtroom but … the office as well.”