Doyle finally makes payment, attorney lashes out at creditor

Doyle finally makes payment, attorney lashes out at creditor

WARWICK – An attorney for State Sen. Jamie Doyle delivered a check for $600 to Scituate business owner Melissa Bruno last Thursday, leading Bruno to pass on further legal action for now.

Attorney John Longo had agreed in Kent County District Court on May 12 that his client would pay Bruno and her Phoenix Administrators $600 as a first payment and then $300 a month into the fall toward a $7,000 debt. Bruno had taken Doyle back to court after he failed to comply with a judge’s order to pay her for her company’s medical billing services two years ago.

“With history being the best indicator of future behavior, I’m not confident that Mr. Doyle will keep to the new court-ordered payment plan,” said Bruno after the payment. “Time will tell.”

Doyle, the son of former Pawtucket Mayor James Doyle and a veteran member of the General Assembly, claims Bruno’s Phoenix Administrators was the last company he had to reach an agreement with as he works to pay off massive debts of nearly $100,000, including liens on his home and business.

The senator last week listed a series of debts on his state ethics filing after WPRI discovered that he’d failed to report them.

According to the station, he started personally guaranteeing debts as a way to win back clients. Personal debts must be included on the ethics form.

Though Doyle has personally guaranteed other debts, Longo clarified that he did not agree to personally guarantee Doyle Respiratory’s $7,000 debt to Bruno as part of court proceedings, meaning she can’t sue him personally if he fails to pay. The debt to Phoenix Administrators was not disclosed on the ethics form, he said.

Doyle hasn’t returned calls, but Longo this week called Bruno’s actions against the senator a way to get attention for herself and create “a circus.”

“I saw it as a business dispute that could have been resolved as such,” he told The Breeze.

Creditors who treat debts as a business dispute work with the company that owes them money instead of “going on Facebook” with complaints and filing “bogus sensational documents threatening to put Jamie in jail,” said Longo. Jail time for the senator “was never a legal possibility,” he said.

Bruno took exception to Longo’s assertion that she turned the dispute into a circus, saying she did what she needed to do to finally start getting paid the money she needed.

“In response to attorney Longo’s statement that I’ve turned this case into a circus, I need to remind him that the media may not have noticed this case at all had his client simply honored his debt to me at any time during the last four years,” she said.

Asked if last week’s delivery of the $600 check might validate Bruno’s strategy of taking Doyle to court, Longo scoffed at the idea. He said Bruno would likely have been paid much sooner if she hadn’t gone the legal route.

Bruno has told The Breeze she had all but given up hope of ever seeing money from Doyle until she saw the senator’s disparaging comments toward M & G Trucking owner Melody Majkut in a February Breeze story. Majkut had criticized Doyle for not getting back to her on her concerns about a vote for state truck tolls. Bruno said Doyle’s comments implying Majkut stalked him and his challenge to Pawtucket residents to “come after me” if they wanted him out office inspired her to renew her efforts to get paid.

Doyle failed to comply with a court order in December of 2013 demanding that he pay Bruno $200 monthly installments on his $7,000 debt starting in August 2014. After an initial payment of $400, he stopped paying her. Added court costs and attorney fees have since been added to the total.

Longo said Doyle decided to modify his ethics form last week after “a finer reading” of ethics rules and regulation showed “that the debts he’s now reporting should be reported.” As evidenced by other lawmakers’ failure to properly fill out the form, the document is not clear about exactly what should be reported, said Longo.

In previous court filings, Longo told Bruno attorney Steven Hart that Doyle Respiratory owed “tens of thousands of dollars” to the IRS and thousands more to other businesses he’d worked with.

In the interview with WPRI, Doyle said his personal and business debts do not impact his ability to serve his constituents in Senate District 8 in Pawtucket as he’s done since he was first elected in 2004.

Doyle loosely quoted Kid Rock’s song “Cocky” to say that he’s doing just fine as a senator and member of the Senate Finance Committee despite his debts.

“You can be cocky, but it’s OK if you can back it up,” he said.

As for the struggle of running a company, Doyle said he often looks up to the Lord and wonders how he’s still in business “with all the billing issues” Doyle Respiratory has had.

Bruno says she only agreed to a new payment plan with Doyle after Hart told her that a judge would not send Doyle to jail due to his work on the Senate Finance Committee. Hart told The Breeze after last week’s court appearance that Doyle’s state position had no bearing on how he handled the case.

“I couldn’t care less,” he said.

Comments

From the sounds of it, Doyle's attorney seems to me as much of a complete loser piece of garbage as Doyle himself. Its bad enough that Doyle made this poor lady wait so long to get paid and defied a court order in the process, but for his lawyer to now personally attack Mrs Bruno is completely disgusting. He should have a complaint brought against himn before the Bar. Certainly gives lawyers a bad name. I would say that Doyle gives politicians a bad name, but the general assembly already has that covered. And Senator Doyle, you should resign and learn a little humility. Youre an embarrassment to your father who was a good public servant.

Yea but if resigns he'll have no money to pay that woman back cause we all know how well his business is doing, by is own admission.

I'm the husband of the business owner that Kid Doyle owes money to. His attorney, Short Round, states how we are trying to get attention and turn this into a circus."No Shorty, just trying to get our 7K plus interest." And yes it is a business dispute for a large amount to people like us and we had to get a court order which he ignored . But you're right Shorty, it could have been settled another way; he could have paid us or I can take over the note and we can leave the courts out of this. I'll have my collection agency take care of it and they are slightly more aggressive than attorney Steve Hart.

Sincerely Steve Bruno
Facebook site "Friends against Jamie Doyle."