SIDNEY — A former Sidney attorney entered a guilty plea in Shelby County Common Pleas Court Thursday, for himself.
Joshua S. Albright, 29, of Troy, a former associate at the law firm Roberts, Kelly and Bucio practicing in Sidney, entered into a plea agreement to one count of forgery, a felony of the fifth degree.
As a part of the agreement, he will also sign an affidavit of retirement or resignation, in which he will discontinue his practice of law.
Albright was originally charged with five counts of forgery, but the prosecution dropped the other four counts as a part of the agreement.
According to the grand jury indictment that was handed down in February 2015, on Aug. 15, 2014, Albright knowingly uttered falsified paperwork for custody on behalf of Christopher M. Strunk, which bore a fraudulent file stamp from the Juvenile Court of Shelby County.
On Dec. 17, 2015, The Ohio State Bar Association filed a motion with the Supreme Court of Ohio for immediate interim remedial suspension of Albright. The next week, the supreme court ruled in favor, suspending his practice of law for an interim period.
The hearing on Thursday was scheduled after a request for intervention in lieu of conviction was filed by Albright and his counsel. The request stated “the events that occurred on or about August, 2014 that led to the forgery charges were motivated by Mr. Albright’s habitual use of alcohol. Additionally, Mr. Albright was suffering from depression with ideations of suicide.”
The request continued to explain why and how Albright satisfied the requirements for this sort of intervention, saying, “Mr. Albright understands the seriousness of the forgery offenses with which he is charged. He is truly remorseful for his actions. The offense resulted from an isolated event, and intervention in lieu of conviction will not demean the seriousness of this offense.”
Shelby County Prosecutor Tim Sell opposed this request, which is what lead to the plea agreement being reached.
Judge Dale Anthony Crawford, a retired judge of the Franklin County Common Pleas Court, is the visiting judge on the case. In court Thursday, he explained the possible consequences, including up to 12 months in prison, a maximum fine of $2,500 and a discretionary three years of post release control upon release from prison.
Albright’s sentencing is set for June 10 at 10 a.m.
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