State Bar Court of California issues public reproval to Santa Monica attorney over criminal charges

By Olivia Olsen | Jun 13, 2017

LOS ANGELES – The State Bar Court of California recently issued a public reproval to Aaina Agarwal, a Santa Monica attorney, after receiving notice of a criminal complaint filed against the attorney in Los Angeles County.

According to the November 10 decision, Agarwal was stopped by California Highway Patrol on Jan. 30, 2016 after the officer allegedly observed her swerving in and out of her lane near midnight. Upon requesting the attorney’s identification, she allegedly provided an Arizona driver’s license despite having been in California for almost a decade.

The attorney reportedly had red, watery eyes and a distinct smell of alcohol emitting from her. The officer asked her if she had been drinking. She said she had not and that her eyes were in such a state because she had been crying. He proceeded to have her complete a field sobriety test, which she was allegedly unable to complete. After taking a breathalyzer test, it was revealed that the attorney’s blood alcohol (BAC) level was 0.08 percent, the legal limit.

Agarwal had a prior driving while intoxicated charge in October 2015 in which she crashed into a parked car. The attorney’s BAC read as high as 0.10 percent between two alcohol tests at the scene, and a witnesses security camera footage showed Agarwal's car swerving into the parked cars, according to court documents. She pleaded nolo contendere to the 2015 and 2016 charges for which she received probation.

The court placed conditions on the attorney’s public reproval, including completing the California State Bar Ethics School and submit quarterly reports to the state bar’s Office of Probation for one year.

Agarwal has been a member of the California State Bar since 2011. She is a graduate of the University of Southern California Law School and had no prior record of discipline.

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