Lexington replaces city attorney

By Shauna Muckle

Jared Jenkins, the embattled attorney who was banned from Rockbridge Circuit Court in October, will no longer represent the city of Lexington.

Mayor Frank Friedman revealed Nov. 17 that Jenkins would no longer contract with the city after he split from his employer, Mann Legal Group.

Jared Jenkins will no longer serve as Lexington’s city attorney after he split from Mann Legal Group. He’ll stay on as town attorney for Goshen. (Photo courtesy of Mann Legal Group)

Jenkins has started his own practice in Lexington, JenkinsEsq, PLLC. He remains as a town attorney for Goshen, Iron Gate and Clifton Forge.

Friedman said Jenkins reached out to the city and offered to provide services from his own practice. But Friedman said he told Jenkins the city had made other arrangements.

“It wasn’t a fun conversation, but it was a conversation nevertheless,” Friedman said.

In October, Jenkins was ordered to pay at least $4,800 in opposing attorney’s fees to the Rockbridge Circuit Court. That was after he criticized Judge Christopher Russell, calling the judge’s ruling in a land trust case involving Jenkins’ private client “unethical.”

Jenkins was found in contempt of court for refusing to pay court-ordered fees in October. He was also banned from practicing law in Circuit Court.

Jenkins refused to pay those court-ordered fees at first, incurring additional fines and a threat of jail time starting Nov. 10.

Jared Jenkins split from his employer, Mann Legal Group. Larry Mann told Lexington Mayor Frank Friedman that his firm would no longer represent the city of Lexington. (Shauna Muckle photo)

Jenkins ultimately paid off those fines Nov. 7. Jenkins has said he plans to appeal his ban from Circuit Court, among other appeals he’s said he will submit to state courts.

Lexington appointed an interim attorney, Jeremy Carroll of Salem, Va.-based law firm Guynn, Waddell, Carroll & Lockaby, P.C., on Dec. 1. Carroll has represented the city in other cases.

Lexington’s city manager is now conducting a search for a full-time city attorney.

Despite months of controversy surrounding Jenkins, Goshen Mayor Tom McCraw said the town is committed to their attorney.

“He’s done a real good job for us,” McCraw said. “He’s a good attorney, dependable, knows what needs to be done. He’s very professional. There’s no concern about that at all.”