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FACULTY (subject to change)
Jose A. Baez (Coral Gables, FL)
The one common denominator when you look at the biggest high profile cases in America is attorney Jose Baez. Casey Anthony, George Zimmerman (Baez represented the lead Detective) Gary Giordano (Missing in Aruba case), the Dark Knight Theatre shooting in Aurora, Colorado (Baez represented the victims) and Katelyn Roman (Cyber bullying case); these are just a few of the cases that he has been involved with. While he is best known for shocking the world as the lead defense attorney in the Casey Anthony case, Baez has also represented many victims in civil cases. Like the shootings in Aurora, Colorado and most recently the Hialeah, Florida shooting massacre. The L.A. Times has called Baez "one of the most sought after defense attorneys in the country." He is also a highly sought after legal analyst and speaker as he has been asked to lecture across the United States and in five different countries. Jose Baez is also a faculty member at Harvard Law School where he teaches 2nd and 3rd year law students the interworking’s of trial advocacy. In order to more effectively cross examine many forensic experts, Mr. Baez finds it important to learn the science himself. That is why he has completed hundreds of hours of training in forensic science. Mr. Baez has studied DNA, Blood Pattern Analysis, trace recovery, forensic pathology and entomology, just to name a few. Mr. Baez has gained extensive experience in successfully defending scientifically and medically intensive criminal and civil cases. He has worked on issues including shaken body syndrome, pediatric head injuries, sexual assault cases with medical evidence, and cases involving DNA evidence.
Simon Cole (Irvine, CA)
Simon A. Cole is Professor of Criminology, Law and Society at the University of California, Irvine. He received his Ph.D. in Science & Technology Studies from Cornell University. Dr. Cole is the author of Suspect Identities: A History of Fingerprinting and Criminal Identification (Harvard University Press, 2001) , which was awarded the 2003 Rachel Carson Prize by the Society for Social Studies of Science, and more than 20 scholarly articles and book chapters about the scientific validity of fingerprint evidence and its use in the courts. His most recent book is Truth Machine: The Contentious History of DNA Fingerprinting (University of Chicago Press, 2008, with Michael Lynch, Ruth McNally & Kathleen Jordan). Dr. Cole has spoken widely on the subjects of fingerprinting, scientific evidence, and science and the law, and he has consulted and testified as an expert witness on the validity of fingerprint evidence. He has also written for many general interest publications, including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, New Scientist, and Lingua Franca. He is a member of the American Judicature Society Commission on Forensic Science and Public Policy, and he is Co-Editor of the journal Theoretical Criminology.
Jim Cooney (Charlotte, NC)
Jim Cooney has represented individuals and businesses in some of the most difficult and high-profile cases in North Carolina. He successfully defended Reade Seligmann - one of the wrongfully charged lacrosse players in the “Duke Lacrosse Rape Case” - by securing a dismissal of the charges and a declaration by the Attorney General of North Carolina that Reade Seligmann was innocent. He successfully defended a convicted death row inmate, Alan Gell, by exposing the prosecutorial misconduct that led to his wrongful conviction and sentence of death. Heading a team of Womble Carlyle lawyers who worked pro bono, Cooney first convinced a Superior Court Judge to reverse Gell’s conviction and sentence of death and then, acting as co-counsel at Gell’s retrial, obtained a “not guilty” verdict. Gell became the 113th person in the United States to be exonerated after being wrongfully convicted and sentenced to death. Cooney was awarded the North Carolina Bar Association’s Pro Bono Award for his work in Alan Gell’s case. Mr. Cooney, as lead appellate counsel, secured a reversal by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit of a District Court’s decision reducing a contingent fee agreement in a personal injury case from 33% to 3%. In re Abrams and Abrams, - F.3d – (2010) 2010 WL 1971240. This resulted in the award of $5.4 Million in additional attorneys’ fees. Cooney successfully defended a convicted death row inmate, Michael Pinch, by gaining a reversal of two first degree murder convictions and death sentences that had been imposed 26 years earlier. During the course of representing Pinch for more than a decade, Cooney found both legal errors and prosecutorial misconduct that led a Superior Court to throw out Pinch’s convictions and death sentences. Mr. Cooney successfully defended five hospital systems in seven putative class action lawsuits brought on behalf of uninsured patients, resulting in a dismissal of all claims against the hospital systems. He successfully defended the North Carolina Democratic Party in hearings before the State Board of Elections alleging that the Party participated in a scheme to avoid the campaign finance laws of North Carolina involving the Mike Easley for Governor Campaign.
Ellen Eggers (Sacramento, CA)
Bio to come...
Iris Eytan (Denver, CO)
Iris Eytan is a criminal defense attorney and a partner at Reilly Pozner LLP in Denver, Colorado. She focuses her practice on high-profile criminal defense litigation, with a special emphasis on cases that involve homicide, assault, sexual offenses and mental health issues. Iris is listed as a “Top 100 Trial Lawyer” by the American Trial Lawyers Association and in the “Top 50 Women Lawyers” in Colorado Super Lawyers. She is also included in The Best Lawyers in America in the specialty of Criminal Defense: Non-White Collar and is AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell. Prior to joining Reilly Pozner LLP, Iris was a Deputy State Public Defender and a senior attorney for the Legal Center for People with Disabilities and Older People. She earned a J.D. from the University of San Diego and a B.A. from the University of Arizona. Iris is an experienced lecturer and recently served as the Co-Chair of the NACDL’s National Criminal Defense Forum on Forensic Mental Health & the Law.
Prof. Keith A. Findley (Madison, WI)
Keith A. Findley, a 1985 graduate of the Yale Law School and a 1981 graduate of Indiana University, is an assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin Law School, where he teaches courses on criminal procedure, wrongful convictions, and evidence, and where he is also co-founder and co-director of the Wisconsin Innocence Project. He is currently the president of the Innocence Network, an affiliation of more than 60 innocence projects in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, the Netherlands, France, Italy, and South Africa. He has written and published numerous articles and book chapters on various topics related to wrongful conviction of the innocent, including wrongful convictions in so-called Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS) cases. In addition to teaching and writing about the law, he has litigated hundreds of appeals at all levels of state and federal courts, including numerous cases that led to exoneration of a wrongly convicted individual. In 2008, he successfully represented Audrey Edmunds in the first case in the U.S. in which a court overturned an SBS conviction on the basis of new scientific evidence challenging the SBS expert testimony used at trial to obtain the conviction.
Prof. Jeffrey L. Fisher (Stanford, CA)
Jeffrey L. Fisher is a professor at Stanford Law School and co-director of its Supreme Court Litigation Clinic. His academic and Supreme Court work runs the gamut of federal constitutional and statutory matters, but focuses on constitutional criminal procedure issues. Professor Fisher has argued 23 cases in the Supreme Court, including successfully representing the petitioners in Crawford v. Washington, Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts, Blakely v. Washington, Kennedy v. Louisiana, and, most recently Riley v. California. In 2006, the National Law Journal named him one of the 100 most influential lawyers in the country – the youngest person on the list – and he has remained on that list since. He also is a recipient of the Heeney Award, the highest honor bestowed by the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Professor Fisher formerly served as a law clerk to Justice John Paul Stevens on the Supreme Court of the United States and to Judge Stephen Reinhardt on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Patrick Morgan Ford (San Diego, CA)
Pat Ford is an appellate lawyer in San Diego, specializing in criminal writs and appeals in the state and federal courts. He represents defendants in capital and noncapital cases, was co-counsel before the US Supreme Court in Riley v. California (2014) 573 US, and has been counsel of record in many cases published by the California courts and the Ninth Circuit. He has written and published The California Criminal Law Reporter (available at patfordlaw.com), a case law digest used by lawyers and judges around the state since 1983. He also writes a regular online article for California Attorneys for Criminal Justice (CACJ), and lectures on criminal law related topics. He received his B.A. from Georgetown University and his J.D. from the University of San Diego.
Scott C. Fraser, PhD (Los Angeles, CA)
Bio to come...
Daniel G. Giaquinto (Bridgewater, NJ)
Bio to come...
Nellie L. King (West Palm Beach, FL)
Bio to come...
David Meyer (Los Angeles, CA)
Bio to come...
Darryl S. Neier (Livingston, NJ)
Darryl Neier, Principal of the Firm, is in charge of the Forensic Accounting / Litigation Services Group. He holds this role because of the unique experiences he brings to the firm. Having spent 20 years with the Morris County New Jersey Prosecutor’s Office, Darryl has been involved in the detection and prevention of fraud in a variety of situations and cases. Darryl’s reputation as one of the experts in this field is widely recognized. He has worked on cases that include white collar crime investigation, money laundering, insurance fraud and computer forensic investigation and political corruption. Since joining Sobel & Co., Darryl has been involved in domestic and international engagements involving forensic accounting (criminal and civil fraud investigations, banks and shareholder disputes; computer forensics; business valuation; fraud vulnerability studies; loss profits calculation; damage claim analysis; asset recovery; due diligence review; discovery production; intellectual property investigations; anti-money laundering compliance and expert witness testimony). Additionally, Darryl serves on the firm’s Executive committee and is a faculty member at both New York University and a certified instructor with the National White Collar Crime Center. Darryl holds a Master of Science degree in Economic Crime Management from Utica College of Syracuse University and a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from William Paterson University.
Steve Oberman (Knoxville, TN)
Steve is the founder and managing partner of The Oberman & Rice Law Firm practicing in the areas of DUI defense and criminal defense. Among the many honors bestowed upon him, Steve served as Dean of the National College for DUI Defense, Inc. (NCDD) during 2009-2010. He was subsequently designated as a Fellow and continues to serve on several committees of the NCDD. He currently serves as chair of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers DUI Committee. Steve was the first lawyer in Tennessee to be certified as a DUI Defense Specialist by the Tennessee Commission on Continuing Legal Education and Specialization and the NCDD. He is the author of DUI: The Crime & Consequences in Tennessee, updated annually since 1991 (Thomson-West), and co-author with Lawrence Taylor of the national treatise, Drunk Driving Defense, 7th edition (Wolters Kluwer/Aspen). Steve has served as an adjunct professor at the University of Tennessee Law School since 1993 and has received a number of prestigious awards for his faculty contributions. He is a popular international speaker, having spoken at legal seminars in 23 states, the District of Columbia and three foreign countries. His DUI and trial technique seminar audiences have included the bar associations and judicial associations in many states and the National Judicial Institute of Canada.
Mark M. O'Mara (Orlando, FL)
Mark M. O'Mara has been practicing Criminal and Family Law in Central Florida for over 30 years, and is presently Board Certified as a Criminal Trial Specialist and a Marital and Family Law Specialist. Mark is a former felony prosecutor and Division Chief and has handled all types of criminal cases, including traffic, property crimes, DUI, drug cases and Death Penalty cases. He has extensive trial experience in both state and federal criminal defense. Mark also represents clients in contested divorce cases, involving child time sharing issues, alimony and division of assets.
Dr. Nora Rudin (Mountain View, CA)
Norah Rudin holds a B.A. from Pomona College and a Ph.D. from Brandeis University. She is a member of the California Association of Criminalists, the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, and a Diplomate of the American Board of Criminalistics. After completing a post-doctoral fellowship at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, she served three years as a full-time consultant for the California Department of Justice DNA Laboratory and has also served as consulting technical leader for the Idaho Department of Law Enforcement DNA Laboratory, the San Francisco Crime Laboratory DNA Section, and the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department DNA Laboratory. Dr. Rudin has co-authored An Introduction to DNA Forensic Analysis and Principles and Practice of Criminalistics: The Profession of Forensic Science. She is also the author of the Dictionary of Modern Biology. Her current work focuses on forensic DNA interpretation and statistics. She co-founded SCIEG, a non-profit company created to house Lab Retriever, a free of charge and open-source software tool for forensic statistics. SCIEG also provides and promotes education in forensic interpretation and statistics as well as forensic science in general. Dr. Rudin has taught a variety of general forensic and forensic DNA courses for the University of California at Berkeley extension and on-line. She is frequently invited to speak at various legal symposia and forensic conferences, and recently served a guberatorial appointment to the Virginia Department of Forensic Science Scientific Advisory Committee. She remains active as an independent consultant and expert witness in forensic DNA.
Prof. William C. Thompson (Irvine, CA)
William C. Thompson is a professor in the Department of Criminology, Law & Society at the University of California, Irvine (UCI); he has joint appointment in UCI’s School of Law (where he has taught Evidence) and in the Department of Psychology and Social Behavior. He received a Ph.D. in psychology from Stanford University and a J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley. He has published extensively on the use and misuse of scientific and statistical evidence in the courtroom and on jurors’ reactions to such evidence, focusing particularly on forensic DNA analysis and on the problem of contextual bias. He has received over a million dollars in grant funding to study issues related to inference and bias in forensic science. Although primarily an academic, Thompson occasionally practices law, representing clients in cases involving novel scientific and statistical issues. He has also been an expert witness. Thompson was a member of the Task Force that drafted the ABA’s Standards on DNA Evidence, he served on the California Crime Laboratory Review Task Force, and was a voting member of SWG-Speaker—the scientific working group on speaker identification. He currently a member of the Human Factors Committee established by the Department of Justice and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to advise their Forensic Science Standards Board.
Deja Vishny (Milwaukee, WI)
Deja Vishny has practiced criminal defense for 33 years with the Wisconsin Office of the State Public Defender. She heads the Homicide Practice Group at the Milwaukee Trial Office and is also a training coordinator for that agency. She studied police interrogation and attended the Reid school of Interrogation course in 2004, is a nationally known lecturer on the subject of defending false confession cases, and published articles in The Champion and The Wisconsin Defender on the subject. She is a faculty member at the National Criminal Defense College in Macon, Georgia, and an Adjunct Professor of Trial Advocacy at Marquette University Law School and has taught at seminars on trial and motion practice throughout the United States and in India. She served two terms on the Board of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and several terms on the Board of the Wisconsin State Bar Criminal Law Section.