Skip to main content

About me

Criminal Trials

I accept a limited number of new trial matters in Los Angeles County.  New clients must be factually innocent and willing to take a polygraph.


Criminal Appeals & Habeas Petitions

I am currently accepting new clients for representation on appeal from their California wrongful conviction. (Not limited to Los Angeles County.)  Clients must be factually innocent.


Petitions for Actual Innocence - P.C. 851.8, 1485.55, 4900

I help innocent people secure a finding of factual innocence and, if applicable, compensation for time spent in prison.  P.C. 851.8 set fee; P.C. 1485.55/4900 contingency fee. (Not limited to Los Angeles County.)


Nonprofit Work

Most of my time is devoted to Innocence Matters, a nonprofit I founded in 2010.  We help secured freedom for indigent innocent people and we use the lessons from those cases to design preventative programs that will enhance the accuracy of the criminal justice system. Prospective Innocence Matters clients should follow the application instructions on that website.  Please do not contact me directly.


Photos and videos

90890 1425060330

90890 1349037298

90890 1349037190

90890 1236032263

Practice areas


  1. Appeals: 50%
    11 years, 50 cases
  2. Criminal Defense: 25%
    23 years, 2.5 thousand cases
  3. Civil Rights: 25%
    2 years, 2 cases



Fixed (always), Retainer (sometimes), Free consultation (30 minutes)

Payment types:

Cash, Check, Credit card

Attorney endorsements

12 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • Larry David Wolfe

    I have had the pleasure of working with Deirdre on matters in Georgia and in California. I find her to be an insightful and skilled lawyer who is as compelling on the written page as she is in the courtroom. I strongly endorse her work and highly reccomend her to those whose rights are in jeopardy.


    Larry Wolfe Criminal defense Attorney
    Relationship: Worked together on matter

  • Alexander Thomas Henderson

    I shared an office with Ms. O'Connor in downtown Los Angeles in the PD's office when she was first assigned to handle felony cases back in 1998. Her intelligence and motivation was absolutely first rate. I can only imagine the skills she has acquired through years of experience. I endorse her with great enthusiasm.


    Alexander Henderson Criminal defense Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

Contact info

Innocence Matters

PO Box 1098
Torrance, CA, 90505

Law Office of Deirdre O'Connor

PO Box 1098
Torrance, CA, 90505



GAActive Member in Good Standing 200608/05/2016
MANot authorized to practice200505/05/2012
We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Lawyer of the YearCalifornia Lawyer Magazine2015
Board Certified AdvocateNational Board of Legal Specialty Certification2014
Certified SpecialistState Bar of California2014
Alchemy Leadership CertificationAnnenberg Foundation2014
Semi-finalist for 2011 PopTech Social Innovation FellowsPop Tech2011
Supreme Court Grants PetitionUnited States Supreme Court2009
Second Place Table Topics ContestToastmasters - Area 952008
Proposal Selected for Social Justice ProjectNortheastern University School of Law2007
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
Executive DirectorInnocence Matters2010 - Present
OwnerLaw Offices of Deirdre O'Connor2008 - Present
Summerfuel FacultyUniversity Of Massachusetts Amherst2013 - 2013
Director of Indigent Criminal Defense ClinicEmory University School of Law2006 - 2008
Criminal Defense Seminar InstructorWilliams College - Summer Excel Program2005 - 2005
Panel AttorneyCalifornia Appellate Project2003 - 2005
Public Defender Trial AttorneyLos Angeles County Office of Public Defender1994 - 2003
Association namePosition nameDuration
Innocence MattersSecretary2015 - Present
United States Supreme Court BarMember2008 - Present
Georgia Supreme Court BarMember2007 - Present
Georgia Court of Appeals BarMember2007 - Present
State Bar of GeorgiaMember2006 - Present
Eyewitness Identification Reform Litigation NetworkPoint Person2006 - Present
American Bar AssociationMember2006 - Present
Georgia State Bar Association, Criminal Law SectionMember2006 - Present
United States District Court for the Southern District of CaliforniaMember2004 - Present
Los Angeles County Bar Association, Criminal Justice SectionMember1995 - Present
State Bar of CaliforniaMember1993 - Present
Innocence MattersChair2010 - 2014
Georgia Association of Criminal Defense LawyersMember2006 - 2008
Legal cases
Case nameOutcome
In Re Troy DavisPetition Granted!
Child Eyewitness CaseNot guilty
A Present for Mama?Not guilty
See all legal cases 
Publication nameTitleDate
Innocence Matters BlogVarious articles on the struggles of the innocent2012
Talk Nation Radio InterviewSavannah GA District Attorney Spencer Lawton defends original trial of Troy Anthony Davis2008
Talk Radio Interview with Dori Smith11th Circuit Court gives Troy Anthony Davis new hope for an appeal2008
CommonDreams.OrgCan Georgia Do Right?2008
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
Northeastern University School of LawLawJD - Juris Doctor1993
State University of New York, AlbanyPsychologyBS - Bachelor of Science1990
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
Marymount Meid Visiting Mentor LecturerInnocence Matters: Protecting all the John Smiths within our reach.2014
Excellence in Leadership Speakers' SeriesInnocence Matters2013
Televised interview on the Troy Davis caseInnocence not enough to save you from death row2011
Radio show interviewTroy Davis (five days after his death)2011
Radio show interviewTroy Davis' pending execution2011
Radio interview two days after Troy's deathWe executed an innocent man2011
Guest Speaker Forensic PsychologyCriminal Defense Perspective2009
Southeastern Writing Workshop for Clinical TeachersWrongful Acquittals? Talk About Being Unclear On The Concept!2007
Southeastern Writing Workshop for Clinical TeachersFear Not, You Can Only Lose Once: Teaching Fearlessness2007
Emory Law Public Interest ConferenceInnocence Matters: Freeing Troy Davis2007
Eyewitness Litigation ConferenceCasting Doubt on the Confident Witness2006
DUI Conference for Clinic and DeKalb County Public DefendersConference Organizer2006
Criminal Procedure Class Guest SpeakerWhy Defend Criminals?2006
Excel Program for High School StudentsCriminal Justice Seminar2005
Voir Dire PracticumConference Organizer2000
New Lawyer TrainingDemonstrative Evidence2000
New Lawyer TrainingDemonstrative Evidence1999
Monthly In-House Continuing Legal EducationDiscovering the Police: Following the Paper Trail1999
New Lawyer TrainingDemonstrative Evidence1998
New Lawyer TrainingDemonstrative Evidence1997
New Lawyer TrainingDemonstrative Evidence1996