Osklaloosa lawyer reprimanded due to assault conviction

    nterior of an empty courtroom with gavel and sounding block on the desk.
    The Iowa Attorney Disciplinary Board has reprimanded an Oskaloosa attorney who was convicted last year of assaulting a woman. (Photo by Getty Images)

    The Iowa Attorney Disciplinary Board has reprimanded an Oskaloosa attorney who was convicted last year of assaulting a woman.

    In April 2019, a woman filed a Petition for Relief from Sexual Abuse against attorney Matthew B. Moore. The petition described three separate incidents: one in which Moore was alleged to have partially exposed himself to the woman by dropping his pants; one in which he was alleged to have forcefully hugged her against her wishes while making sexualized comments about her body; and one in which he allegedly expressed a desire to force her to be submissive.

    A temporary order of protection was issued by the court, prohibiting Moore, 57,  from having any contact with the woman. A few weeks later, Moore sent an innocuous text message to his wife, mistakenly doing so via a previously established thread in which the woman was included. Moore was then charged with violation of a no-contact order. He was sentenced to two days in jail for that offense.

    In January 2020, a jury found Moore guilty of simple assault, a charge that stemmed from a police complaint alleging Moore had “grabbed (the woman) and put her in a bear hug and attempted to kiss her while being told to stop.” Moore was fined $250 and a new no-contact order was issued.

    The Attorney Disciplinary Board determined that Moore’s convictions and his acknowledgment that he “made a mistake and (is) very regretful” amounts to ethical misconduct and warrants a public reprimand.

    Clark Kauffman
    Deputy Editor Clark Kauffman has worked during the past 30 years as both an investigative reporter and editorial writer at two of Iowa’s largest newspapers, the Des Moines Register and the Quad-City Times. He has won numerous state and national awards for reporting and editorial writing. His 2004 series on prosecutorial misconduct in Iowa was named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting. From October 2018 through November 2019, Kauffman was an assistant ombudsman for the Iowa Office of Ombudsman, an agency that investigates citizens’ complaints of wrongdoing within state and local government agencies.