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Fake it… Till You Don’t Make it?

Barry Bremen (wiki) was an insurance and novelty goods salesman. He became famous and known in the sports world as The Great Impostor.

During the years of 1979-1986, he pretended to be a Major League Baseball umpire during the World Series, a baseball player during the Major League Baseball All-Star Game, a player during an NBA Basketball all-Star Game, a National Football League referee, a Dallas Cowboys cheerleader, and even a professional golfer.

ESPN 30 for 30 films even did a story on his escapades. A guy from Detroit who was able to con his way into amazing situations in just about every sports venue. That’s why I thought of him when I read the following story about a “Pennsylvania Lawyer”.

A Pennsylvania “lawyer” has been exposed as a fraud. ( Kimberly Kitchen, who was supposedly an estate-planning partner at BMZ Law, was recently sentenced to two to five years in prison.  Here’s why.

She had practiced law for 10 years and was also a former president of the Huntingdon County Bar Association. Her biography listed that she was previously a legal secretary at the law firm of Reed Smith. That is a firm that has been on the other side of our law firm, in recent pharmaceutical litigation.

She claimed that she had graduated first from her class at Duquesne School of Law and even taught estate planning at Columbia Law School. She also claimed that she was “the best and biggest around”.

It all worked for 10 years until the winter of 2014. That’s when the Huntington Bar Association decided to create a listing of their lawyers, including their years of practice. Another lawyer compiling the listing stumbled upon her lack of a law degree. So no “biggest and best”.

Kitchen was convicted on charges of unauthorized practice of law, forgery and felony records tampering. She was accused of lying about graduating from Duquesne University’s law school and also faking documents to prove her bar membership. She fooled the entire community.

What was the defense of her lawyer? That she had provided good legal work and that her clients were happy. I guess if she had been a bank robber, he would have said that she drove a clean car away from the scene, and that she left everyone behind with a smile on their face. Gracious!

For pic o’ day, this one makes me laugh. It also makes me wonder who was taking the picture? As they say, “only hug a lion tightly”.



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