Why I Became a Defense Attorney
Three reasons: To help people in trouble; to protect individual rights; and to defend the Constitution.
I grew up watching my mother help people when they most needed it and I know it made a deep impression on me. I learned so much from watching her. Most importantly, she taught me to “meet people where they are” and see what you could offer of yourself to help them. She was the best counselor and mediator you’d ever meet and I strive in my own career to be half as good as she was in her career. She is gone now but I know that I carry her spirit with me whenever I am actively engaged in helping someone in crisis.
I also grew up as a Navy junior and that, too, made a deep impression on me. My father was a distinguished Naval Officer who flew jets during the Vietnam War. He risked his life to defend our way of life and the Constitution. He knew that if there weren’t citizens who were willing to stand up and fight on behalf of all of us we could lose everything. I am proud to say that I have followed in my father’s footsteps in defending our rights and the Constitution; I have just done it in a different way.
Very early on in my career, I saw how easily all of our rights can be eroded if there aren’t lawyers out there fighting to protect the rights of all who are accused – the guilty and the innocent. If we don’t demand that the promises of the Constitution are delivered, we lose them. The burden to prove guilt is on the government not on the defendant. The Constitution demands that we view people accused of crime as innocent unless and until they are proven guilty. And guilt must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. These are amazing concepts that separate our country and our laws from the rest of the world. We lose them if we don’t fight for them.
At the core, these are the reasons that I chose to become a defense attorney.
|VA||Authorized to Practice Law||1998||07/02/2022|
|Attorney, Sole Proprietor||Law Office of Meghan A. Matulka||2008 - Present|
|Senior Assistant Public Defender||Fairfax Public Defender's Office||2002 - 2006|
|Public Defender||Fairfax Public Defender's Office||1998 - 2001|
|Law Clerk||Fairfax County Circuit Court - Judge Jack B. Stevens and Judge Kathleen H. Mackay||1998 - 1998|
|American University, Washington College of Law||JD - Juris Doctor||1997|
|University of Richmond||BA - Bachelor of Arts||1991|
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