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Charges mount for attorney accused of not providing legal services

Kenneth J. Ford of Baltimore was arraigned Tuesday on three more counts of false pretenses

February 22, 2012|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | matthew.umstead@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — An attorney is facing more charges after allegedly failing to provide legal services to clients who paid him to file various court actions in Berkeley County, according to court documents.

Berkeley County Magistrate Sandra L. Miller on Tuesday arraigned Kenneth J. Ford, 37, of Baltimore on three counts of false pretenses.

Ford previously was charged with three counts of false pretenses and one count of forgery of public record stemming from three other cases that surfaced last month, according to court documents.

In the most recent charges, West Virginia State Police fielded complaints on Feb. 1, 2 and 10 from individuals who allege Ford failed to provide legal services, court documents said.

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On Feb. 1, a man told police that he retained Ford in April 2010 and had paid him $2,000 to assist him with filing for divorce from his spouse, who resides in Arizona, the documents said.

Police verified no divorce petition was filed on behalf of Ford’s client, according to court records.

On Feb. 2, a woman told police that she retained Ford in 2007 to file a lawsuit against a company. She was later told that a judgment was decided in her favor and that she was to be paid in $5,000 increments beginning in January 2011, the documents said.

Upon receiving the complaint, police determined the attorney never filed the lawsuit, according to court records.

On Feb. 10, a man told police that he discovered Ford failed to follow through with filing court actions in a counter lawsuit involving a company after the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office arrived at his home to attempt to satisfy a court judgment against him by seizing his vehicles, the documents said.

Ford first was arraigned on Jan. 11 on allegations that he forged a court order after being paid by former West Virginia University basketball standout Kevin Pittsnogle for legal services that were not provided.

On Jan. 17, a woman told police that Ford failed to appeal her divorce settlement after she paid him $1,900, according to court records. She told police that she retained Ford in April after becoming dissatisfied with her previous attorney.

On Jan. 19, state police fielded a complaint from a man who alleged Ford failed to assist him in filing for divorce after paying the attorney $500 more than a year ago, court records said.

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