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About me

I developed an interest in the law when I was in high school and worked for my father, who is a lawyer.  My mother was a teacher and my grandfathers both were in unions.  From birth, I was taught the value of compassion and equal rights.  I am proud to say that I have only been a criminal defense attorney in my legal career.  I am passionate about representing the powerless and the little guy against the State and police who I find often abuses its' power.   


My parents are both writers and I learned the value of telling stories at an early age.  I believe trial attorneys are storytellers.   We must tell our client's story in a way that is vivid and captures the essence of the underlying feelings of the story.   I have done much work as a student and faculty at Gerry Spence's Trial Lawyer's College honing my storytelling skills in the courtroom.   I have taken 2 years of improv which helped me with listening skills and reacting in the moment.   These are essential tools for any trial lawyer.


I am married and have two elementary school aged sons.   We love to play and watch baseball and football.  I have lived in Detroit or metro Detroit my entire life except for 6 years when I went to St. Louis, Missouri with my husband.   We returned to our hometown to start our family.    I love gardening and music.   I am grateful that I chose a career that I love.   When I stop loving what I do, it is time to retire.



Photos and videos

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Practice areas


  1. Criminal Defense: 100%
    19 years



Fixed (sometimes)

Payment types:

Cash, Check, Credit card

Attorney endorsements

9 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • Brian Joseph Prain

    Cheryl Carpenter is, without a doubt, the go-to person for all Michigan citizens charged with criminal sexual conduct and dealing with issues related to the Sex Offender Registry. Studies have revealed that when indictments are read to juries at the beginning of criminal trials, those alleging sex crimes are most likely to destroy the defendant's presumption of innocence. Combined with that, prison sentences are harsh for those convicted of CSC offenses. That means you need an expert and it is no time to fool around. I endorse Cheryl not only because she is that expert, but because she is a good human being who incorporates human understanding and compassion into her cases. Cheryl is a faculty member of the Trial Lawyers College in Wyoming, and you can watch her teach other Michigan lawyers on video at If you have been charged with CSC, might be charged, or know someone in such a position, call Cheryl. You would be doing yourself a disservice not to.


    Brian Prain Criminal defense Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

  • Rhonda B. Ives

    I endorse Cheryl Carpenter and highly recommend her to anyone facing a legal charge. I have been able to consult with Cheryl on a number of cases and truly value her experience; she has been and is a true fighter for young people who are accused of crimes that would require lifetime registry, affecting their ability to ever lead a normal life. Cheryl has an amazing natural gift in a Court room ... She is able to connect with a jury, stand up for the truth and fight or justice. Cheryl is a true warrior; she can and will fight for her Clients, especially when the system tries to bury the truth.


    Rhonda Ives Criminal defense Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

Contact info

25742 Schoolcraft Road
Redford, MI, 48239


MIActive And In Good Standing200108/04/2016
MONot authorized to practice-Administrative199601/08/2013
We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Super LawyerSuper Lawyers Magazine2014
Top LawyersDBusiness2012
Justice for All AwardCriminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan2012
Rising StarSuper Lawyers Magazine2011
Rising StarSuper Lawyers Magazine2010
Honors in Legal Writing and ResearchWayne State University Law School1994
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
Teaching staffGerry Spence's Trial Lawyers College2009 - Present
Adjunct Professor, Trial SkillsThomas M. Cooley Law School2009 - Present
Owner, Attorney at LawLaw Offices of Cheryl A. Carpener, PPLC2001 - Present
Association namePosition nameDuration
Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan, Rules/Laws CommitteeN/A2011 - Present
Coalition for Useful RegistryBoard Member2008 - Present
National Association of Criminal Defense LawyersN/A2000 - Present
Legal cases
Case nameOutcome
Removal from the Sex Offender RegistryImmediate removal from sex offender registry
People v. R.F.Not Guilty
Removal from the Sex Offender RegistryClient removed from sex offender registry
See all legal cases 
Publication nameTitleDate
Criminal Defense Newsletter - MichiganChanges in the Michigan Sex Offender Registry2011
The WarriorImprov and the Trial Lawyer2008
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
Wayne State University Law SchoolN/AJD - Juris Doctor1995
Michigan State UniversityPolitical Science/Pre-lawOther - Bachelors1992
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
Washtenaw County Bar AssociationChanges in the Michigan Sex Offender Registry2011
Criminal Advoacy Program (CAP)Sex Offender Registration - What Criminal Defense Lawyers Need to Know2011