For the last year local plaintiff's attorney John Morgan has been embattled in an unpleasant divorce with his wife Kathleen Winslow. Last week, the affair spilled over into another court when Morgan sued his divorce attorney.
Morgan, who is no stranger to Jefferson County District Court, filed the suit against attorney George Michael Jamail on Oct. 24. Since 1997, Morgan has filed more than 900 suits in the county courthouse.
Ten days before his divorce became final on Oct. 27, Morgan fired Jamail, who had been representing him for the past year -- replacing him with attorney Debra Wester, court papers show.
The abrupt substitution led Jamail to appear at an Oct. 17 hearing, where made statements in front of the presiding judge, Randy Shelton.
"(Jamail had been) terminated and (had) no authority to speak on behalf of Mr. Morgan," the suit states, adding Jamail also violated attorney-client privilege when he shared confidential information with Wester, the court and others.
A phone call to Jamail's law firm was not returned, and neither the suit nor Morgan's divorce file state why he replaced Jamail a week before the final divorce decree was signed.
Morgan hoped to silence Jamail's unwelcome comments by filing the suit and request for an emergency restraining order. However, the order was never signed.
In his pro se suit, Morgan alleged Jamail "cursed in his presence" after he fired him and told him he intended to violate the attorney-client privilege by offering his testimony at the Oct. 27 final divorce hearing.
The suit Morgan filed against Jamail was approximately his 908 suit filed by him and/or his law firm (Lindsay & Morgan) in the county's district court.
In 2008 so far, Morgan has filed around 25 lawsuits, including one of this year's most controversial suits, Melissa Dwyer et al vs. Dixie Dance Hall et al, in which Morgan seeks $15 million on behalf of a young woman who was killed while driving intoxicated.
In that suit, the parents of Megan Watkins sued the establishment who sold their daughter alcoholic beverages, the tow truck driver she hit head on while driving on the wrong side of I-10, and her insurance company.
According to Morgan's final divorce decree, which is a public document viewed by the Record, he has been ordered to pay Kathleen more than $200,000, surrender three bank accounts to her and pay $1,875 in child support each month.
Kathleen filed her petition for divorce and request for a temporary restraining order Oct. 22, 2007.
That same day, she was granted a TRO. The restraining order is no longer in effect, but in it Morgan was prohibited from beating her and the children, calling in the middle of the night to call her profane names and from tampering with their property or funds.
The case against Jamail has been assigned to Judge Gary Sanderson of the 60th District Court.
Case No. B182-583