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Clifton C. Carden

also known as Clifton C. Carden, III, Esq., Carden Dotzler, PLLC

About me

Clifton has built a team of former prosecutors dedicated to protecting your rights. Before becoming the managing partner at Carden Dotzler, PLLC., Mr. Carden was an Assistant District Attorney with the Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office in Syracuse, NY, where he was assigned to the DWI Bureau. Mr. Carden supervised a county-wide case load consisting of felony and misdemeanor driving while intoxicated, boating while intoxicated, snowmobiling while intoxicated, and aggravated unlicensed operation crimes. 

Mr. Carden has instructed for the Prosecutor’s Training Institute, District Attorney’s Office, County Magistrates Association, Bar Association, and Stop DWI Driver Improvement Program. 

In addition to his DWI duties, Mr. Carden coordinated the Veteran’s Diversion Program for the Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office. The program ensured that the criminal justice system addresses the needs of combat veterans who have served our country, while maintaining the safety of our community. 

Prior to being appointed to the DWI Bureau, he served in the Municipal Courts Bureau where he handled arraignments, preliminary hearings, suppression hearings, various courts throughout the county, and coordinated the ride-along program between law enforcement agencies and the office. 

Mr. Carden served as an Assistant District Attorney for 5 years. Before joining the DA’s Office, Clifton served on active duty in the infantry of the United States Marine Corps.  His active duty assignments included serving with the Marine Corps Security Force Company in Kings Bay, Ga. and two deployments with Kilo Company 3rd Battalion 8th Marines.  After leaving active duty, he continued his service in the Army Reserve with the 88th Military Police Company of Fort Eustis, Virginia.  As a civilian, Mr. Carden worked in the City of Norfolk, Virginia, at both the federal and local level, as a police officer until attending law school. 

Mr. Carden received his law degree from the T.C. Williams School of Law at the University of Richmond and his undergraduate degree from Christopher Newport University.


Photos and videos

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Contact info

Carden Dotzler, PLLC

100 Madison Street
Syracuse, NY, 13202

Practice areas


  1. DUI & DWI: 100%
    3 years



Retainer (always), Free consultation (120 minutes)

Payment types:

Cash, Check, Credit card

Attorney endorsements

18 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • Derek S Andrews

    I know Clifton to be an excellent attorney who always has his clients' best interests at heart. It is always reassuring to see him help his clients in the courtroom and elsewhere. I endorse this lawyer.


    Derek Andrews DUI and DWI Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

  • Jason Bay Zeigler

    I know Cliff both from his days as a prosecutor and now as a defense attorney. I remember a trial where my client, who Cliff was prosecuting, was impressed with Cliff's ability to relate to the potential jurors during jury selection. Cliff brings a Marine's work ethic to the practice of law. Cliff's work ethic coupled with his experience prosecuting DWI cases serves his clients well. I endorse this attorney.


    Jason Zeigler Criminal defense Attorney
    Relationship: Opposing Counsel on matter


NYCurrently registered 200703/07/2016
We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
For efforts dedicated to citizens accused of DUI.National College for DUI Defense2015
For tireless dedication and devotionOnondaga County District Attorney2013
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
Managing PartnerCarden Dotzler, PLLC.2015 - Present
PartnerAzria Law Office2013 - 2015
Assistant District AttorneyOnondaga County District Attorney's Office2008 - 2013
OwnerOffice of Clifton C. Carden, III, Esq.2007 - 2008
Law ClerkHanover County Commonwealth Attorney's Office2003 - 2004
SergeantUnited States Army Reserves1998 - 2002
SergeantUnited State Marine Corps1994 - 1998
Association namePosition nameDuration
New York State Defenders AssociationMember2015 - Present
National College of DUI DefenseMember2015 - Present
New York State Bar Association, Criminal Justice SectionMember: Town, Village and Justice Court Committee2015 - Present
New York State Bar AssociationMember2008 - Present
Onondaga County Bar AssociationMember2007 - Present
Onondaga County Bar FoundationEditorial Board2012 - 2015
Legal cases
Case nameOutcome
(DWI) State of New York v. D.I. (Onondaga)Reduced to a violation with minimum fine and no need for the ignition interlock device.
(DWI) State of New York v. V.I. (Oswego)Reduced to a violation with minimum fine and no need for the ignition interlock device.
(DWI) State of New York v. J.T. (Onondaga)A violation with no need for the ignition interlock device.
See all legal cases 
Publication nameTitleDate
Onondaga County Bar Association Bar ReporterPast Experience Shapes Career Sucess2013
Syracuse Post StandardAttorney a credit to district attorney's office2012
Syracuse Post StandardTwo SU Law School teams heading to national championship2010
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
Delaware State PoliceN/AHomicide Investigation Certificate2010
University of Richmond, The T. C. Williams School of LawLawJD - Juris Doctor2006
Christopher Newport UniversityGovernment AdministrationBS - Bachelor of Science2002
City of Norfolk Police AcademyN/ADWI Detection & Standardized Field Sobriety Certification2000
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
Driver's Safety for County EmployeesThe consequences of DWI for government employees2013
Driver Improvement for CDL EmployeesThe rights of drivers upon New York roadways2013
17th Annual Bridge the Gap ProgramNew York DWI and Vehicle and Traffic Offenses2013