Recently retired as a judge of the Fresno Superior Court, I will serve as Of Counsel to the firm of Hammerschmidt Law Corporation, representing criminal defendants in state and federal court with an emphasis on jury trials and jury consultation. I will also serve as a mediator in all case types, drawing on my decades of experience resolving civil and criminal cases to bring parties to an agreed disposition, avoiding the cost and stress of litigation.
After graduating from Stanford University and Hastings College of the Law, I joined the law firm of McCormick, Barstow, Sheppard, Wayte and Carruth in 1987 as an associate, specializing in civil litigation, primarily complex business matters and employment disputes. My practice there included jury and court trials. I left in 1991 for the Fresno County District Attorney’s Office, where I served as a Deputy District Attorney through 1998, prosecuting a variety of felony and misdemeanor cases, including sexual assaults and other serious crimes, many involving life sentences. I tried more than 30 felony jury trials to verdict as a lawyer, while also serving as an elected member of the Clovis City Council from 1994 through 1998.
In January of 1999, I took my oath of office to serve as a judge of the Superior Court of California, in and for the County of Fresno, where I served for more than 21 years. I presided over more than 200 jury trials, including more than 20 homicides, as well as countless felony and misdemeanor pretrial and sentencing hearings, felony preliminary examinations and law and motion matters, civil jury and court trials and law and motion, probate, family law and juvenile matters. I served as a court leader in judicial education and court organization, and I was part of a statewide effort to improve court operations as a director of the Alliance of California Judges. I remain active in the community, serving on the boards of the Clovis Community Foundation and Central California Legal Services Inc.
The experience I have gained in civil and criminal law practice and the insight into jury trial practice that I obtained in my 21 years as a trial court judge make me uniquely qualified to evaluate and aggressively litigate any criminal case. Through my experience settling dozens of civil cases and hundreds of serious criminal cases I have obtained the skills needed to resolve cases of any type in mediation. Every client’s case is important and I am committed to providing the level of service you have a right to expect from your attorney or mediator.
|Superior Court Judge||Fresno Superior Court||1999 - 2020|
|Deputy District Attorney||District Attorney for the County of Fresno||1992 - 1998|
|Associate||McCormick, Barstow, Sheppard, Wayte & Carruth, LLP||1987 - 1991|
|University of California, Hastings College of the Law||JD - Juris Doctor||1987|
|Stanford University||BA - Bachelor of Arts||1981|
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