also known as Matt Burgess
Matt Burgess is a South Carolina native, born in Columbia and raised in Camden, and has represented clients across the state in matters of Criminal Defense, DUI & Traffic, Personal Injury, Accidents, Workers’ Compensation & General Litigation, among others. Matt has been named a member of The National Trial Lawyers Association: Top 100 Trial Lawyers, and his casework has been featured on networks and in publications, including: Fox News, CNN, the New York Times & USA Today.
Matt also volunteers with the South Carolina State Guard as a Captain in the JAG Section. In 2015, he was awarded the Commendation Medal for pro bono representation undertaken in a unique legal matter, the exoneration case of State v. Stinney (1944): In 2013, Matt spearheaded a legal effort to clear the name of George Stinney, Jr., the youngest defendant executed in the United States since the beginning of the 20th Century. In December 2014, seven decades after Stinney’s death, the murder conviction was vacated. This marked perhaps the first time in United States history where judicial process has set aside a conviction post-execution. USA Today’s “50 Stories from 50 States” named Stinney South Carolina’s biggest story in 2014.
Matt is a believer in the system created by our Founding Fathers, and understands that justice is only truly reached through diligent representation from both sides of our adversarial system. He firmly believes that the Constitutional safeguards promised to each of our citizens are what set us apart as a Nation, and that these safeguards are to be vehemently protected:
All are equal before the eyes of the law. All are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
Matt is devoted to the preservation of these principles and takes pride in defending those rights on behalf of his clients charged with criminal offenses. He is similarly committed to representing the interests of those who have suffered harm caused by others’ negligence.
Matt received his Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from The Citadel, where he was the recipient of the 2010 Citadel English Faculty Award, awarded annually for the most outstanding academic essay submitted during the specified school year. As a freshman, “fourth-class” cadet, he was the youngest member of the entering class, having graduated early from high school (three years), and served in a number of leadership roles at The Military College. As a junior, he was chosen as the November Company First Sergeant, tasked with the general supervision of more than 100 peers and subordinates. As a senior, he was a member of the 2010 Summerall Guards, chosen for membership following a demanding initiation process of rigorous physical training.
Upon graduating from The Citadel with honors in May 2010, Matt enrolled at Charleston School of Law. As a law student, he served as an extern in the quarters of The Honorable Thomas L. Hughston, Jr. In December 2012, Matt graduated early from law school and became licensed to practice in his home state.
The Law Office of Matt Burgess, Ltd. Co. is located in downtown Rock Hill, SC. Matt regularly takes cases in York County and the surrounding areas- Cherokee, Chester, Chesterfield, Fairfield, Kershaw & Lancaster counties- but has also represented clients across South Carolina’s Midlands & Lowcountry: Lexington, Richland, Sumter & Charleston counties, among others.
Matt is driven by the notion of making a positive difference in the lives of others, particularly those who need it most. Each of his clients will receive every effort to ensure that their rights are protected.
Licensed since 2013
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|Award Name||Grantor||Date Granted|
|Commendation Medal||South Carolina State Guard||2015|
|Top 100 Trial Lawyers||The National Trial Lawyers Association||2015|
|Top 100 Trial Lawyers||The National Trial Lawyers Association||2014|
|Attorney||The Law Office of Matt Burgess, Ltd. Co.||2015 - Present|
|Captain||South Carolina State Guard JAG Section||2014 - Present|
|Associate Attorney||Coffey, Chandler & McKenzie, P.A.||2013 - 2015|
|Judicial Extern||The Honorable Thomas Hughston, Jr.||2012 - 2012|
|Association Name||Position Name||Duration|
|The National Trial Lawyers Association||Top 100 Trial Lawyers||2014 - Present|
|South Carolina Bar||Member||2013 - Present|
|CNN||"New trial sought for George Stinney, executed at 14."||N/A|
|Fox News||"Lawyers for South Carolina teen executed in 1944 have new info."||N/A|
|USA Today||“Judge throws out black teen’s conviction from 1944.”||N/A|
|LegalNews.com||“Dusty writ helps lawyer right 70-year-old-wrong.”||N/A|
|Charlotte Observer||“70-year-old murder conviction of SC teen overturned.”||N/A|
|Fox News||“South Carolina boy, 14, should not have been executed in 1944, judge says.”||N/A|
|NPR||“SC judge says 1944 execution of 14-year-old boy was wrong.”||N/A|
|CBS News||“Witnesses challenge 1944 murder conviction of black SC teen.”||N/A|
|WLTX||“George Stinney, Jr’s Sister: My Brother Did Not Do It.”||N/A|
|Reuters||“South Carolina judge tosses conviction of black teen executed in 1944.”||N/A|
|Washington Post||“It took 10 minutes to convict 14-year-old George Stinney, Jr. It took 70 years after his execution to exonerate him.”||N/A|
|ABC News4 Charleston||“Judge: 14-year-old shouldn’t have been executed in SC.”||N/A|
|The Herald||“70-year-old murder conviction of S.C. teen overturned.”||N/A|
|Communities Digital News||“Racism and the tragic execution of 14-Year-Old George Stinney, Jr.”||N/A|
|Courthouse News Service||"S.C. teen exonerated 70 Years after execution."||N/A|
|The State||“New trial sought in 69-year-old murder case.”||N/A|
|Courthouse News Service||New Trial Sought for Black Child Executed in '44."||N/A|
|Charleston School of Law: Sol Blatt, Jr. Law Libary||"Justice is done: George Stinney, Jr.'s 70-year-old conviction is vacated."||N/A|
|Charleston School of Law||Law||JD - Juris Doctor||2012|
|The Citadel||English Literature||BA||2010|