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LETTER: Tragedy in the legal community

Dennis Prince took the Nevada Bar examination a year after me. He was a co-worker for several years and remained a friend for more than 20 years thereafter.

Published photos of Dennis and his wife, Ashley, bring heartache and pain, while the smiling photos of Joe Houston bring resentment and anger. During the past week, we have seen and heard about two very different, long-time Nevada lawyers.

From those who knew Joe Houston, it was puzzling to read their comments indicating that his murderous rage was a surprise when examples of his bad behavior as a lawyer should have raised red flags. Practicing law is a noble profession. The “esquire” after a lawyer’s name represents a notch above a gentleman and a notch below a knight. Lawyers should not be “pretty darn mean in court.” Lawyers should not “fight like caged animals.” And lawyers should not “shove” anyone “into a chair in court.”

Individually, we bear responsibility for the legacy we leave once we’ve passed. Dennis Prince has left a legacy of excellence, love and determination. Joe Houston has chosen a legacy of gunfire and blood.

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