Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
E. Duncan Getchell Jr., a nominee for the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, has been accused of spreading defamatory statements about another Virginia lawyer in order to shore up his foundering nomination and shift blame for an $8 million court error. Richmond, Va. attorney Christopher C. Spencer made the allegations in a defamation suit filed in Richmond Circuit Court Nov. 14. The original dispute arose over who had responsibility for missing the deadline to file trial transcripts in an $8 million personal injury appeal, Getchell and his prominent Richmond law firm, McGuireWoods, or Spencer. The insurer who had to pay when the appeal was tossed out sued Spencer, but not Getchell, whose signature is on the initial 2004 notice of appeal in Grigg v. Wintergreen Partners, Inc., 03-9452, in Albemarle County Circuit Court. Spencer accused Getchell and another McGuireWoods partner, William R. Allcott, of repeating the defamatory statements in news articles, including the National Law Journal and Virginian-Pilot in October. The suit alleges that Getchell and Allcott, fearing negative publicity, conspired to shift blame for the 2004 legal error to Spencer “in hope of salvaging a troubled nomination to the federal bench�” Spencer’s lawyer Andrew M. White, of White O’Connor Curry in Los Angeles, declined to comment on the case. Getchell did not return a message left seeking comment and a firm spokesman was not available to respond. “Getchell’s nomination has been troubled since the day it was made,” said Carl Tobias, University of Richmond School of Law professor who follows the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. “The rest of this is almost irrelevant,” he said. Getchell’s troubles relate more to the objection of Virginia Senators, John Warner, a Republican, and Jim Webb, a Democrat. The two provided the White House with an agreed list of five acceptable candidates. Getchell was not among them. Webb and Warner had a democratic process and agreed on these consensus nominees and Bush stuck a finger in their eye,” Tobias said. President Bush has again chosen to ignore the requests of local senators covering the 4th Circuit in his latest round of nominations sent to the Senate Nov. 15. Bush included Rod J. Rosenstein of Maryland as a nominee to the 4th Circuit. Rosenstein, the U.S. Attorney in Maryland did not enjoy the backing of the two Democratic Senators in Maryland, Barbara A. Mikulski and Benjamin L. Cardin. The issued a statement Friday expressing their disappointment.

This content has been archived. It is available through our partners, LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law.

To view this content, please continue to their sites.

Not a Lexis Advance® Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Not a Bloomberg Law Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law are third party online distributors of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law customers are able to access and use ALM's content, including content from the National Law Journal, The American Lawyer, Legaltech News, The New York Law Journal, and Corporate Counsel, as well as other sources of legal information.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]

Reprints & Licensing
Mentioned in a Law.com story?

License our industry-leading legal content to extend your thought leadership and build your brand.


ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2021 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.