WICHITA, Kan. – Chambers USA 2022 has once again ranked Dan Monnat, of Monnat & Spurrier, Chartered, among Kansas’ top litigators in the areas of White-Collar Crime and Government Investigations, citing his work in healthcare and financial investigations. Chambers has placed Monnat among the state’s top-tier attorneys in this sector for 12 consecutive years.

“I’ve always said that the practice of law is about more than the law… it’s about the thought, action, courage and care we bring to bear in the defense of every client,” Monnat said. “I’m honored that the lawyers and clients surveyed by Chambers have continued to recognize this commitment in my practice, and have seen fit to name me to this distinguished list for the past dozen years.”

For more than 45 years, Monnat has practiced criminal law, white-collar criminal law and appellate law in Wichita and across Kansas. Highly regarded by peers and clients alike, Monnat has been named one of Super Lawyers’ Top 10 Lawyers in Missouri and Kansas every year since 2018. A graduate of California State University, he received his J.D. from Creighton University School of Law. He also is a graduate of Gerry Spence’s Trial Lawyer’s College.

A frequent editorial contributor on criminal defense topics, Monnat is co-author of “Sentencing, Probation, and Collateral Consequences,” a chapter of the Kansas Bar Association’s Kansas Criminal Law Handbook, 5th edition.

Monnat has earned distinction as a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, the International Academy of Trial Lawyers, the American Board of Criminal Lawyers, the American Bar Foundation, and the Kansas Bar Foundation. He currently sits on the Kansas Association of Trial Lawyers’ Board of Editors.

Monnat is a member of the National Trial Lawyers Association. He is a past member of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and lectures frequently at NACDL conferences and at other legal seminars nationwide.

Monnat & Spurrier, Chartered, was founded in 1985 by Monnat and legal scholar Stan Spurrier. In addition to Monnat and Spurrier, the firm includes shareholder Sal Intagliata and associates Eli O’Brien and Alex Sheppard.

WICHITA, Kan. – Alex Sheppard has joined Monnat & Spurrier, Chartered as an associate attorney. His primary practice will focus on the defense of criminal cases including DUIs, drug offenses and domestic violence.

Sheppard comes to Monnat & Spurrier from a prominent personal injury firm where he fought big insurance companies and recovered millions in compensation for injured parties.

“We’re extremely pleased to have Alex join our firm,” said firm President Dan Monnat. “His competitive drive, detailed preparation and work ethic are excellent attributes for a courtroom attorney, whether he’s trying a criminal misdemeanor or a serious felony. Alex’s trial experience will serve our clients especially well.”

A graduate of Washburn University School of Law, Sheppard also holds a bachelor’s degree in biopsychology from Morningside University in Sioux City, Iowa, where he received an athletic scholarship and swam on its men’s swim team.

Sheppard is a member of the Kansas Bar Association, Wichita Bar Association, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and Kansas Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Active in the Wichita community, Sheppard is a member of Wichita Young Professionals.

Founded in 1985 by litigator Dan Monnat and legal scholar Stan Spurrier, Monnat & Spurrier has built a national reputation for criminal defense and appellate defense, computer crimes defense, and white-collar criminal defense. In addition to Monnat, Spurrier and Sheppard, the firm includes former prosecutor Sal Intagliata and former public defender Eli O’Brien.

WICHITA — “No one’s happy about the situation at all. But it’s an opportunity to do the right thing,” said Wichita Mayor Brandon Whipple.

Just one day after Wichita leaders announced an investigation into the police department regarding alleged inappropriate and racist messages being shared by officers, Mayor Whipple said he’s already warning of the repercussions.

“In these types of situations, it’s going to lead to these cases getting tossed out so that other cases can actually take precedence over them, which means we will potentially have people who committed crimes going out scot free,” said Whipple.

It’s actually a law under “Brady-Giglio”, which means when law enforcement officers are called as witnesses, a prosecutor must disclose any evidence that could impact the accuracy of their testimony.

“They have a history of the deviant behavior behind the association they have with each other in the attitude that they have. And that’s something that we should not tolerate,” said Larry Burks Sr., the President NAACP-Wichita.

The district attorney’s office has already pulled all of the records involving the sheriff’s office employees who Sheriff Jeff Easter said were sharing similar and offensive texts.

The DA dismissed about 50 pending traffic tickets, 10 pending and nonviolent criminal cases, and reviewed 120 criminal cases that had already been resolved by the three deputies who were involved.

“I really appreciate the DA going and doing what he has already done with the cases that those officers have been involved with. And those are being looked at right now. I understand that some of those cases have been dismissed. I’m sure a whole lot more that needs to take place,” said Burks Sr.

“Motive, interest, bias, dishonesty is always relevant to credibility,” said Dan Monnat, a local defense attorney.

Monnat said prosecutors can’t withhold evidence that would favor someone accused of a crime.

“Isn’t the jury entitled to know that the so-called objective, forthright testimony they heard from the law enforcement officer on the witness stand is in fact, shaded and undermined by the subjective racism of the off-duty policeman,” said Monnat.

District Attorney Marc Bennett sent an email response to KAKE News Wednesday night saying he did meet with representatives with the WPD, but at this point in the process he’s still assessing the situation and does not have an update.

See full video at KAKE.com

HUTCHINSON, Kan.  – What started the Cottonwood Complex blaze that claimed one life and destroyed at least 35 homes?

“We are still in the investigation. There’s not a lot I can say about it, but we are in the middle of that,” said Reno County sheriff Darrian Campbell. “When you see 35 homes totally destroyed, that’s awful. That’s awful. I have no words.”

Campbell says he is impressed with all the help in Reno County, from fire crews coming from all over the state to volunteers pitching in and his staff working overtime.

But he says charges are a possibility, and the state fire marshal’s office is also investigating since there has been a death in the fire.

“Also, there’s so much monetary damage done by this fire,” said Campbell. “We just have to look into it and investigate it. If somebody is responsible for it, we can possibly hold them accountable.”

Some residents near the fire are asking about fines or legal charges coming as a result of the fire.

“I think somebody should have to pay for this,” said Patricia Strait, who lives near the fire. “There’s like, what, 35 houses that were burned down? How many people are out of a home?”

Patricia says her sister lost her home in the fire. And that fire barely missed her own home.

Campbell continues to praise those responders at every level that have stepped up to help.

“The outpour for offers to help is phenomenal, and I just wanted to say thank you to all those agencies,” said Campbell.

Campbell also said the state fire marshal’s office is involved because of a death resulting from the fire.

“Everybody knows that there has been a body found, so automatically, the state fire marshal office has to be notified, and they were on the scene,” said Campbell. “So the state fire marshal, Hutchinson fire department and Reno county sheriff’s office went ahead and responded and to work that crime scene. And I say crime scene because that’s now how it has to be investigated.”

KSN Legal analyst Dan Monnat looked into charges due to the fire.

“The person could be liable for, even unintended deaths,” said Monnat. “There are possibly two homicide charges that could be charged. One is second-degree murder, which is the killing of a human being under circumstances recklessly manifesting an extreme disregard for the value of human life or involuntary manslaughter, which is simply the killing of another human being, recklessly.”

Monnat says those would be extreme charges, but there is case law in Kansas that looks at unintentional consequences from a fire.

KSN News reached out to the district attorney’s office in Reno County.

Deputy district attorney Andrew Davidson responded.

“The investigation into the wildfires is still ongoing, and the Reno County District Attorney’s Office cannot comment about the investigation at this time,” said Davidson. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families affected by this tragedy.”

See full story at KSN.com

WICHITA, Kansas – Missouri & Kansas Super Lawyers has named Monnat & Spurrier, Chartered, attorneys Sal Intagliata and Eli O’Brien to its esteemed list for 2021. Intagliata was honored by Super Lawyers for the eighth consecutive year, while O’Brien earned recognition as one of Super Lawyers’ “Rising Stars.”

Only 5 percent of eligible attorneys are selected for the overall Super Lawyers list. Only 2.5 percent of eligible attorneys are honored among the Rising Stars list, which includes only those attorneys under 40 years of age.

Sal Intagliata is a shareholder in the firm and has practiced law for more than 26 years. His career includes 22 years as a distinguished criminal defense attorney in private practice and four years as a Sedgwick County Assistant District Attorney prosecuting cases in the Gangs/Violent Crimes Division.

Intagliata serves on the Kansas Judicial Council Criminal Law Advisory Committee and the Kansas Supreme Court Pretrial Justice Task Force. He is a past member of the Board of Governors of the Kansas Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He is a past vice president of the Wichita Bar Association, as well as a past member of its Board of Governors and past chair of its Criminal Practice Division.

Intagliata earned his bachelor’s degree, with distinction, from the University of Kansas, graduating with dual majors in political science and Spanish. He earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of Kansas School of Law. He is also a graduate of the National Criminal Defense College.

Eli O’Brien makes his inaugural appearance on Super Lawyers’ Rising Stars list. Since joining the firm as an associate in 2015, his primary practice has included defense of serious felony accusations, as well as DUI and DWI cases.

Prior to joining the firm, he was a trial attorney with the Sedgwick County Public Defender’s Office. Over the years as a public defender and private practice defense attorney, his jury trials have resulted in a number of acquittals.

A graduate of Washburn University School of Law and the National Criminal Defense College Trial Practice Institute, O’Brien also holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Emporia State University.

WICHITA – There are questions about a forensic pathologist who once worked for the Sedgwick County Forensic Science Center. While there, he conducted hundreds of autopsies for murders, suicides…even testifying as an expert witness in homicide cases. Factfinder 12 investigator Alex Flippin looked into the doctor’s records, finding inconsistencies about where he said he worked and when he said worked there…raising questions about his education and training. Those questions were presented to the State of Kansas to find out if it saw the same inconsistencies and, if so, why the state then granted the doctor a license.

Because of bizarre circumstances surrounding his death, Bob Rai, of Alberta, Canada, believes his cousin was murdered…and he believes Dr. Bamidele Adeagbo was incorrect when he ruled the death a suicide while working as a forensic pathologist in Canada.

“In January of 2014, my cousin was found burned to death inside of his vehicle. Bamidele Adeagbo wrote the autopsy report,” Rai said. “That’s how he came onto my radar, and I started researching into where he started his career, where he got his education etc. and it took me all the way back to the state of Kansas.”

Dr. Adeagbo worked for the Sedgwick County Forensic Science Center from 2008 to 2011. While there, he performed 895 autopsies – 109 of them suicides – another 43 were deemed homicides. Factfinder 12 spent months combing through hundreds of pages of Adeagbo’s school records, test scores, places he worked and the applications he filled out to work there. What we found were a lot of inconsistencies.

We started in Kansas, where on his application to become licensed to practice in the state, Adeagbo said he spent a little less than a year from 1998 to 1999 working as a therapeutic counselor for the Salvation Army. Then we went to Indiana, where he works as a doctor now.

On the application to that state, he lists the same job – this time saying he worked there, not from ‘98 to ‘99, but from ‘98 to 2001. The same years, but different dates are listed for the Salvation Army job on another record held by the Federation Credentials Verification Service (FCVS) – a service used by medical boards to check a doctor’s work and education records. On three different forms, the same job is listed, but with three different date ranges.

Back in Kansas, Adeagbo’s application shows he held two positions at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia for a total of 13 months. The doctor indicates on the application that, for one of those months, he served in a “pathology observership.” In Indiana, Adeagbo lists that same position but says he started that job in December of 1999. Remember, on the Kansas form he said he began that job in January of 1999. That is a discrepancy of almost a year. Also on that form, the doctor doesn’t even list the observership. On the FCVS records, Fox Chase isn’t mentioned at all.

Factfinder 12 contacted Fox Chase Cancer Center to see if they could provide exact dates when Adeagbo was there. In an emailed response, a representative with the center wrote, “No one recalls anyone by that name and we don’t usually sponsor observerships in surgical pathology.”

We responded and asked they check again. We received another emailed response reading, “He was not in the surgical pathology department at any time.”

In June of 2008, Adeagbo tells the Kansas State Board of Healing Arts (KSBHA) that he had never been denied a license to practice. Except, according to the State of Louisiana, he was denied a license three months before applying to practice in Kansas. Our investigation did find that denial of license listed on his application to practice in Indiana.

The KSBHA tells Factfinder 12 that it does not allow applying doctors to supply their medical school transcripts themselves. A KSBHA wrote in an email, “Official transcripts must be provided/verified…generally the federation the Federation Credentials Verification Service.”

We checked the FCVS record on Dr. Adeagbo and found that the FCVS, after several attempts, was unable to obtain the transcripts from Adeagbo’s medical school in Nigeria.

So, why does this matter? Because the determinations made by forensic pathologists help guide criminal cases. They help determine if something criminal occurred that led to a death, and they’re often called to testify under oath about their findings. They have to be credible. Juries will use parts of their testimony to determine guilt or innocence, and Dr. Adeagbo’s records certainly raise questions and for some, like Wichita defense attorney Dan Monnat, they raise concerns.

“All those things are red flags that should suggest to you, me and the defense attorney that this expert is not qualified,” Monnat said after reviewing the findings of the Factfinder 12 investigation.

Adeagbo did testify in homicide cases, so we asked Monnat whether what we uncovered could have any impact on those cases that were all heard by juries more than a decade ago.

“You’ve got to be able to demonstrate to the court three things. Number one, that the testimony provided by the expert, as here, is in fact false. That the prosecution knew it was false and that the perjured testimony was material,” Monnat added.

Monnat says proving those three things is a complex, uphill battle that has limited possibilities of success for anyone hoping for a new trial. When asked what he would think if he had been the attorney representing a client in a trial where Dr. Adeagbo had testified, Monnat said he would have to decide whether to contact his client and suggest an additional action may be in order on that client’s behalf.

So, now removed by years, the question may not be about what can be done, but what should be done.

“Organize a panel to review all the cases in which the suspect expert testified and review them to see if there are convictions that ought to be set aside,” Monnat said. “I applaud all the prosecutors that have done that. And there’s no reason to think that wouldn’t happen here…based on what I’ve seen so far? Yes, it certainly seems like this should be reviewed by a prosecutorial authority.”

Factfinder 12 reached Dr. Adeagbo at the hospital where he works in Indiana to share with him what we found. He told us administrators at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia may not remember him because he wasn’t there very long. He also said, at the time he applied for a license in Kansas, he did not know he’d been denied a license in Louisiana.

Since leaving Kansas, Dr. Adeagbo has continued working as a forensic pathologist with no record of censure or infraction that we could find.

The real question: How was a doctor, with the inconsistent records we found, able to receive a license in Kansas? We asked that questions to the Kansas State Board of Healing Arts. In an emailed response, a representative with the organization said the American Medical Association confirmed Dr. Adeagbo’s education and, even though they also said they require the medical school a doctor attends to provide his record, they accepted notarized copies from Adeagbo himself and a certificate from the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates.

The same representative said our investigation raises new “factual allegations” that are being addressed, but that Kansas law prohibits from talking about their investigation with us unless the board files a petition for discipline.

See full video at KWCH.com

WICHITA, Kansas – For the fourth consecutive year, celebrated criminal defense attorney Dan Monnat, of Monnat & Spurrier, Chartered, has been ranked among the Top 10 of Missouri & Kansas Super Lawyers. He has been among the overall Top 100 of Missouri & Kansas Super Lawyers for more than 15 years.

Monnat has practiced across Kansas and Nebraska for 45 years, focusing on high-profile criminal defense, white-collar criminal defense, appellate defense and bet-the-company litigation. His cases have attracted international attention, including the defense and acquittal of late-term abortion provider Dr. George Tiller and the defense of an innocent man wrongly accused of being the notorious BTK.

“After more than 45 years of practice, it continues to be my greatest privilege to stand with those accused and defend their Constitutional rights,” Monnat said. “There are many accomplished attorneys and great legal minds among the Super Lawyers honorees, and I’m truly humbled to be listed among the Top 10 again this year.”

A graduate of California State University, Monnat earned a Juris Doctorate from Creighton University School of Law and is a graduate of Gerry Spence’s Trial Lawyer’s College.

Monnat currently sits on the Kansas Trial Lawyers Association’s Board of Editors and is the Criminal Law Chair. He is a Fellow of the American Bar Association, the Kansas Bar Association, the American College of Trial Lawyers, the International Academy of Trial Lawyers and the American Board of Criminal Lawyers. He is a Life Member and past Board Member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, as well as a two-term past president of the Kansas Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

A frequent national lecturer and editorial contributor on criminal defense topics, Monnat is the co-author of “Sentencing, Probation, and Collateral Consequences,” a chapter of the Kansas Bar Association’s Kansas Criminal Law Handbook, 5th edition.

Monnat & Spurrier celebrates its 36th anniversary this year. The firm was founded in 1985 by Monnat and legal scholar Stan Spurrier. Today the firm has five lawyers and has earned a reputation for its work in all sectors of criminal defense and criminal appeals.

(WICHITA, Kan.) – A joint survey released today by U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers awards Monnat & Spurrier, Chartered, five “Best Law Firms 2022” rankings for:

  • General Practice Criminal Defense
  • White-Collar Criminal Defense
  • Appellate Practice
  • DUI/DWI Defense
  • Bet-the-Company Litigation

“We appreciate this recognition more every year because it stems directly from surveys of our clients and peers,” said Dan Monnat. “We are honored to earn such high respect from those we serve, as well as from our fellow lawyers in the bar.”

“Best Law Firms” rankings are compiled using evaluations by clients who are asked to rank firms in areas such as responsiveness, cost-effectiveness, civility, and whether the client would refer others to the firm. Rankings also reflect an independent analysis of each firm and surveys from attorneys in similar practice areas.

Celebrating its 36th year, Monnat & Spurrier was founded by criminal defense attorney Dan Monnat and legal scholar Stan Spurrier. The firm has gained an international reputation for its defense of such high-profile clients as late-term abortion provider Dr. George Tiller; the unfortunate innocent person whose home was mistakenly raided by police as being that of serial killer BTK; and most recently, the Western Kansas man wrongly accused of murdering a four-year-old child by cruelly beating or shaking her.

In addition to Monnat and Spurrier, the firm includes shareholder Sal Intagliata and associate Eli O’Brien.

WICHITA — Authorities arrested a Wichita man for crimes related to the Jan. 6 assault on the U.S Capitol. 37-year-old Michael Eckerman is charged with multiple federal offenses in connection to the breach.

Those federal charges include assaulting, resisting or impeding certain officers, obstructing an official proceeding and disorderly conduct in the Capitol building.

KWCH spoke with local attorney Dan Monnat about the possible charges Eckerman faces and the process of a federal prosecution.

Michael Eckerman, a Wichita man, is now one of more than 600 people arrested for crimes related to the breach of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 of this year.

“The three felonies carry maximum federal penalties of five, eight or 20 years in prison, plus fines,” said Dan Monnat. “Of the five misdemeanors: Three of them carry prison sentences not to exceed six months in prison; two of them carry sentences of not to exceed one year in prison, plus fines for all of them.”

An affidavit supporting the arrest claims that this surveillance footages captures the incident. Prosecutors say that during the Capitol breach, Eckerman pushed a Capitol police officer with aggressive force, causing the cop to fall down the stairs and allowing rioters to move farther inside the Capitol.

Wichita attorney Dan Monnat explains what happens after his arrest.

“Once there is either a waiver or an indictment, then he would be arraigned on the charges,” Monnat said. “Next there follows in the procedure the filing and litigation of motions. Ultimately, within 70 days, excluding continuances requested by the defendant, the case will go to a jury trial.”

If found guilty, Eckerman could be convicted of three or more charges, but Monnat emphasizes Eckerman is innocent until proven guilty.

“It’s important to remember that he is still entitled to the full benefits of due process of law,” Monnat said.

Erckerman made his first court appearance yesterday and was released on a $10,000 bond. Tipsters helped prosecutors identify him. The family has no comment at this time.

See full video at KWCH.com

WICHITA — The IRS wants to increase funding by $80 billion to go after tax cheats, but some say it could open your account and transactions to the IRS if you have as little as $600 in any account.

“We don’t know what all is going to happen with the pending legislation and what has been proposed. We are a little bit fearful of it,” said Travis Carr, president of Community Bank in Wichita. “You know many times we’re asked to be the eyes and ears for the government.”

Carr says reporting is nothing new. And he is clear, he is not getting into the politics of the proposal from the IRS and the government.

Republican lawmakers have been firmly against the idea. KSN News reached out to lawmakers on the plan.

U.S. Rep. Ron Estes, R-Kan., got back to KSN News on Monday. He is co-sponsoring a bill to be introduced into Congress to curb the idea.

“Prying open the bank statements and Venmo accounts of Kansas families and small businesses is another example of gross overreach of the Biden administration,” said Rep. Estes.

Estes also said it would be a reporting nightmare for smaller banks.

“We just don’t know yet, what it all means,” said Carr. “Obviously, we take privacy in our customers very seriously, and it’s concerning to us that we may have to, in some form or fashion, report back on some of these transactions.”

The plan passed the U.S. Senate. It is in Congress right now.

Legal analysts say we have seen plans like the current proposal before.

“These are the problems that lie before the gate to our brave, new digital world,” said KSN legal analyst Dan Monnat. “For 45 years, Americans have not had much right of privacy in their banking records. Because in 1976, the United States Supreme Court held that you can’t have a right of constitutional privacy in transactions and records that you willingly place in the hands of a third party like a bank.”

Monnat says that case may not hold in the future. In 2018, there was a U.S. Supreme Court case that had a different take.

“Under the analysis of the United States Supreme Court in 2018 in the Carpenter case, a cell site location information case, the court held that in this pervasive, digitized world of the cloud, you no longer necessarily lose your right to constitutional privacy by placing your records in the hands of a third party,” said Monnat. “Now, it remains to be seen whether that ruling in the Carpenter case will apply to banking records. But it certainly might.”

The overall infrastructure bill passed the Senate last month. Both Kansas senators voted against it. Representatives are back in Washington next week, and they will get a look.

See the full video at KSN.com.