Posted by a Criminal Defense client
In early 2008 I sought to have an old criminal conviction vacated, and the court record sealed. I found a Seattle firm which claimed to specialize in this action, headed by a male attorney with what looked like excellent credentials. Contacting them by phone, I was greeted by a young female who identified herself as Kristy Stell. I gave her some information about my case, and she said she would do some preliminary research and let me know what could be done. She also told me that she was a paralegal who worked only part time for this firm, and did not indicate then that she would be working full time on my case. Because the crime I had committed was against a woman, I did not intend to have a woman working on the case because of possible negative bias against me. However, because I assumed the male attorney would be doing most of the work and would represent me in court, I accepted the arrangement and went ahead with this firm. After several conversations with Ms. Stell I decided I was not totally satisfied with her answers to my questions and I asked if I could meet, or at least speak with, the male attorney, but she was not agreeable to this request. After insisting I speak with the male attorney, she then told me she was an attorney and could answer any questions that he could. I was surprised, to say the least. I later did some research and found that she was at the time in fact a licensed attorney, and not a paralegal. She did not explain why she had told me this, and I did not ask her, not wanting, at that time, to appear argumentative. But I was puzzled, and began to suspect her motives for wanting to work on my case. I had paid fifty percent of the required fee up front, and paid the remainder several months later. She had not indicated that there was anything else I needed to do after the amount was paid in full. However, after I paid the balance, she then informed me that I would need to write a letter to the judge, justifying why I needed to have my court record sealed. This puzzled me, not that I was averse to writing such a letter, but because she had waited until I had paid the full amount before informing me of this. If she had informed me earlier I could have at least done some preparatory work on the project, which could have saved several weeks of time. After the letter was completed she told me that all we needed to do now was to get a court date for the hearing. Some time later I was doing some research on sealing criminal records, and was surprised and alarmed to learn that a new law had been passed which would make it much more difficult to have a record sealed in Washington State. I contacted Ms. Stell and asked her about this, and she replied that she had already told me about this development, which was untrue. Some time after this she contacted me and said that the victim of the crime would need to be notified and given an opportunity to attend the final hearing. She then asked me if I would give her the victim's address, which I considered an insult and an insinuation that perhaps I was thinking of committing more crimes against the victim. I was upset but kept my composure and replied that I did not have that information. She would later ask me the same question, which again made me angry. She had the resources available to find the victim's address, and I saw no legitimate reason to ask me such a question. I could only conclude that she was trying to provoke me into saying something that could justify dropping me as a client, ending my case, while keeping the money I had paid the firm. When my hearing came up I learned to my surprise that Ms. Stell would not be representing me in court, but instead the male attorney I had never met or even allowed to contact, at Ms. Stell's insistence. The conviction was vacated but the judge refused to seal the court record. Although Ms. Stell worked hard on the case, I believe she was biased against me because the victim was a woman.
Posted by Rachel
Kristy did a great job with my case. She was very professional, knowledgeable and kept me informed with everything that was going on. I would highly recommend her.
Posted by Angela
Kristy Stell, is outstanding she was able to "Vacate and Seal" my conviction not to mention restore my voting rights.she is truley a professional lawyer, because i live in another state this is my first time being able to put a beautiful face with a kind person.
Thank you! Kristy
Posted by Christina
Kristy Stell had handled two separate traffic violations within the last 3 month on my behalf. She was very professional and thorough with all necessary paperwork and timely with relaying all related information back to me. She was able to get one ticket dismissed and another significantly reduced. I would recommend Kristy Stell to others as an attorney.
Posted by Nancy
Kristy, Took charge, instilled confidence in her client and when it was all said and done, we walked away without having to pay a cent. Kristy was great!
Posted by Jeff
Ms. Stell has continually kept me informed via phone calls or emails. She is a great listener and has always taken my information and processed it accordingly. She's thorough and dedicated to her duties.
Posted by Lavonne
Kristy was easy to talk to and kept us informed during our entire process. She helped us to feel comfortable with her knowledge and supported us through a difficult time.
Posted by Cynthia
I feel grateful I found someone who not only I listened with all her heart, but was also very gracious about sharing her knowledge in laymans terms and being honest about clarifying my options.
Posted by a client
She was very easy to talk to and took the time to explain exactly what was happening. Professional while making me comfortable at the same time. Got me a great deal.
Posted by Kevin S.
Due to some poor choices i made in the past i was required to hire legal help,which is where i meet Kristy Stell,which came highley recomended by a friend that had used her in the past as well.Her ability to complete all the legal proceddings and help me out were far above the bar,and beyond my expectations.she was always on time,and never missed a court date.she always was able to return my calls,and answer any questions i had promptly.going into court with out her by your side..i would highly not recomend!