Suspended Las Vegas lawyer suspected in murder-suicide – Las Vegas Review-Journal

A longtime Las Vegas lawyer is accused of fatally shooting his girlfriend before killing himself last week in a rural California county about 70 miles southwest of Lake Tahoe.

The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office has identified Ulrich Smith, a former defense attorney and prosecutor, as the suspect in the case. In 1994, Smith ran unsuccessfully for Clark County district attorney against Stewart Bell.

State Bar of Nevada records show that Smith received his license to practice law in Nevada in 1984 and that his license was suspended in November 2017.

About 10:15 a.m. Thursday, a woman, calling from a neighbor’s home, contacted the Sheriff’s Office to report that her daughter had been shot by Smith inside a home on Meyers Lane, located in a rural area of Somerset, California.

Deputies and SWAT officers surrounded the home and were able to speak to Smith, who they discovered was inside the house. According to the Sheriff’s Office, Smith was armed and refused to exit the home.

About 5:30 p.m., police heard a gunshot inside the house.

Inside, they found Smith dead from what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound. His girlfriend, Janet Trigg, also was found dead.

Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson said on Monday that he learned about Smith’s death over the weekend but knew little about the criminal investigation.

The two first met about 25 years ago, when Smith was a young prosecutor. Over the years, Wolfson said, Smith became a fixture in the courthouse.

“He was a nice man,” Wolfson told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “I feel sorry for the fact that he took his own life.”

Former District Attorney David Roger, who worked alongside Smith, said he “was a good guy, but he battled demons since he was in the DA’s office.”

Roger declined to elaborate. Of last week’s shooting, Roger said, “It’s obviously sad for his victim and tragic for his family.”

Criminal defense attorney Robert Langford also worked with Smith as a prosecutor and was Smith’s campaign treasurer in 1994.

“He was a great guy who had a real heart for being a prosecutor,” Langford said. “He could connect well with people. He could find what was the most rational, reasonable argument and make it in a gentle, humble way.”

He said he never knew Smith to be violent.

Smith’s law license was first suspended for 90 days in 2002 after he bounced three trust account checks and failed to respond to inquiries from the State Bar of Nevada about what happened. He appealed the suspension a year later but lost.

In a separate plea agreement with the bar in 2017, Smith was suspended again for 90 days and ordered to pay $7,500 in restitution and fees, along with completing ethics and law practice classes.

The bar found that he had failed to provide accounting updates and dividends to a client while he retained a $5,000 monthly fee for himself.

He had appointed himself as a guardian for a client, while falsely stating in his guardianship petition that he had never been suspended, according to his suspension order.

“Although motivated by his concern for the client’s trust, Smith acted with intent in violating duties owed to his client, the public and the profession, resulting in actual or potential injury to all,” the order stated.

Three Nevada Supreme Court justices dissented with the suspension, stating that Smith’s suspension should have been longer, given the previous discipline he faced.

Contact David Ferrara at dferrara@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-1039. Follow @randompoker on Twitter. Contact Rio Lacanlale at rlacanlale@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0381. Follow @riolacanlale on Twitter. Review-Journal staff writer Rachel Crosby contributed to this report.

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Over 100 Riot Games employees walked out protesting the company's policy on forced arbitration after a scathing news report and a lawsuit

Riot Games

  • Over 100 Riot Games employees walked out of work on Monday afternoon to protest the company’s forced arbitration policy for worker disputes.
  • The walkout follows months of turmoil at the video game studio over allegations of sexism and misconduct.
  • Such allegations included an apology from the company, the two month suspension of an executive and a tell-all blog post from a top executive when he quit
  • After workers sued the company seeking class-action status, the company filed a motion to force the lawsuit into private arbitration. 
  • And employees responded with this protest.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

More than 100 employee at Los Angeles video game studio Riot Games walked out of work Monday afternoon to protest the company’s forced arbitration policy for workplace disputes.

The protest comes after eight months of turmoil at the company, which has faced numerous accusations of fostering a hostile, sexist work environment. Last year, Riot Games apologized for its culture first documented in a scathing expose reported by Kotaku in August, 2018. Riot’s culture again became the center of media attention when a former high-level Riot Games employee published a blog post about the sexism he said he witnessed at the company.

Among the allegations in the blog post and lawsuit were reports of women being rated on “hotness,” executives using the slogan “no doesn’t necessarily mean no,” and women who suffered through unsolicited pictures of the male anatomy. 

In November, a current and a former employee filed a class-action lawsuit for gender-based discrimination, sexual harassment, and unequal pay. 

In December, the “League of Legends” game maker suspended its chief operating officer, Scott Gelb, for two months without pay following reports of sexual misconduct. Gelb has been accused of repeatedly farting on employees, humping them, and hitting their testicles as a part of what was described as a running workplace joke. 

The same week  in March Gelb was scheduled to return to work, the company announced it had hired a chief diversity officer, the Verge reported. 

And in April, Riot filed a motion requesting that lawsuit be sent to private arbitration. Private arbitration makes a class action lawsuit all but impossible. It also takes the lawsuit out of the public eye. 

As a result of that motion, Riot employees threatened to walk out, Vice reported at the time.  Executives, including the new Chief Diversity Officer talked to employees and promised changes.

Riot Games is the latest in a string of tech companies hit by employee protests against arbitration

Last week, Riot announced that it was changing its forced arbitration policy but only after the lawsuit was resolved and only for new employees, giving them a chance to opt-out of forced arbitration” for sexual harassment and sexual assault” claims it said in a blog post. It told current employees it would tell them at a later time if it would allow them to opt-out of forced arbitration for the same claims.

The company also made a number of promises to improve its culture in the next 30, 60 and 90 days.

But protesters were not happy with that decision and so the walkout happened.

One reporter noted slogans on signs held up by protesters that said:“It shouldn’t take all this to do the right thing” and  “I reported and he got promoted”.

Another protester explained in a tweet, “It should not be legal to force workers into arbitration when they suffer sexual harassment– or any other discrimination, really. It’s already not legal in several states. I’d like my company to be on the cutting edge of this issue!!”

Riot Games isn’t the only tech company facing worker revolt over forced arbitration policies. Google announced an end to forced arbitration involving sexual harassment claims in February after an employee walkout.

It followed Microsoft, which ended forced arbitration for sexual harassment in late 2017.

In late 2018, Uber whistleblower Susan Fowler also pushed for legislation to end employee forced arbitration agreements. And in 2017 she also filed a brief with the Supreme Court lobbying it to rule against forced arbitration as well.

SEE ALSO: Microsoft’s Satya Nadella says the ‘brilliant jerk’ days in tech are over, but they’re not

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