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David Michael Lawrence

Criminal defense Attorney at Salinas, CA

5.0   4 reviews
  • Licensed for 55 years
    State CA
    Acquired 1968
    Active No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About David

Learn David’s areas of practice.

Practice areas
  1. Criminal defense
    Serving individuals facing criminal related matters. Over 30 years of experience dedicated to you and your family.

  2. White collar crime

  3. Domestic violence

  4. Insurance fraud

  5. Sex crime

For over four decades, Michael Lawrence has been recognized as one of the most respected and effective trial attorneys in Monterey County. In 2010, he was the recipient of the Lewis C. Fenton Award, which is the Monterey County Bar Association’s most prestigious award for excellence in trial advocacy. He has successfully handled many high profile cases including representing elected officials accused of theft and embezzlement as well as police officers and other political officials. Michael has aggressively defended thousands of people and tried scores of jury trials ranging from capital murder to simple misdemeanors during a career spanning over forty years.

Michael graduated from Hastings College of the Law, University of California, in 1968. He then worked as a staff attorney with the Riverside Public Defenders Office, and was a partner in the Riverside law firm of Hennigan, Butterwick, and Clepper.

He arrived in Monterey County in 1972 and accepted a position as an attorney with the Monterey County Public Defender’s Office. Three years later, in 1975, he became the Assistant Public Defender. In 1979, he was appointed the Chief Public Defender of Monterey County by the Board of Supervisors, running the Public Defender’s Office for 27 years. He was California’s longest-serving chief public defender.

Michael is a member of the Monterey County Bar Association, California Attorneys for Criminal Justice, and the California Public Defenders Association.

Contact David

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Law Offices of Lawrence & Peck
220 Capitol Street
Salinas, CA, 93901


5.0 / 5.0
  4 customer reviews
5 Star
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1 Star
Posted by Dawn | August 2, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
From Shock and Chaos to Clarity, Calm and Hope
In one, brief sentence: a resounding YES - hire this attorney and his associated firm! They will not steer you wrong. Words do not express the depth of gratitude I hold for Mr. Lawrence, his associate Ms. Peck, and the staff of Lawence & Peck. I was arrested in the fall of last year and found my life, my world, completely shattered. This is my first encounter with the criminal-law system, therefore, I knew nothing. My initial phone call was met with calm, understanding, caring and a clear "art of listening". The staff took the time to hear my situation and then began to form a plan of action. I will not go into detail of the various meetings, however, what IS important to say is that as the details of my case came to light, there were more questions asked, more fact finding, more fact checking toward the task at hand: how to position me for the best possible outcome for my given situation. I was provided with cost and fee expectations depending on the direction my case might take. What stands out for me is the depth of research and attention to detail. Facts and comments I made during our meetings were revisited in follow up meetings to varify accuracy; building a time-line of events. I was convicted of a criminal act. This fact will stay with me the rest of my life. Mr. Lawrence, Ms. Peck and their staff have been forthright and honest with the severity of my circumstance, yet, they have been kind and empathetic to how I ended up in such a circumstance. They have not painted a rosey picture or sheltered me from hard truths. Mr. Lawrence's ability to compile facts and data into a time-line helped me immensely to understand my circumstances separate from opinion and my rather raw emotions. Constantly explaining the possible directions my case could go and what those outcomes could entail. I have been informed, educated and guided all along the way so that when the time came for me to make decisions toward my case, that only I could make, I felt armed and ready to do so. Today I have hope. Hope that I can live with this chapter of my life and rebuild something new that I can be proud of. To find oneself facing a criminal sentence is no easy road to walk. Mr. Lawrence showed me dedication, a fierceness, toward the best possible outcome on my behalf. If you've read this far - thank you. With deep gratitiude and the highest respect, I recommend my attorney, Mr. David Michael Lawrence.
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Posted by anonymous | October 14, 2015
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Excellent Criminal Defense Lawyer
Mr. Lawrence did an outstanding job representing me in a high profile criminal case. He has a great wealth of knowledge in criminal law and his attention to details and facts of a case are exceptional. Mr. Lawrence put a lot of time and effort into my criminal defense. He was always candid and he took the time to insure I understood the court process as well as looking out for my best interests. I highly recommend his serves as a criminal defense attorney.
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Posted by Charles | October 14, 2015
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Extremely Good Attorney
I had a complicated criminal case brought against me by the government. He worked very hard with research and diligence, missing no gaps. The case was dismissed at a very early stage, thanks to his detailed work. He was always available to answer questions and console me. He allow a extremely reasonable compensation plan. I'm so happy the first attorney could not take my case and referred me to Michael. He is an extremely nice and warm person who was not only interested in my case, but interested in me as a person.
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Posted by R. Peters | October 14, 2015
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Unexpected Outcome...
I made bad decisions. I was caught. I had no hope. Attorney lawrenc did so much work behind the scenes and the case was settled with a good outcome for me. I was able to get help for drinking and am ding so much better. I'm very thankful.


  • Free Consultation 30 minutes
Payment methods
Cash, Check, Credit Card


AVVO RATING 8.9 (Excellent)

Work Experience

  • Partner
  • Law Offices of Lawrence & Peck
  • 2006 - Present
  • Chief Public Defender
  • Monterey County Public Defender's Office
  • 1979 - 2006


  • University of California, Hastings College of the Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1968
  • Whittier College
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 1962

Legal Cases

  • Accessory to Murder
  • Charges Never Filed
  • Doctor Indicted for Fraud
  • Case Dismissed


  • California Attorneys for Criminal Justice
  • Member
  • 2006 - Present
  • California Public Defenders Association
  • Member
  • 1972 - Present
  • State Bar of California
  • Member
  • 1968 - Present

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2016
  • AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2015
  • AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2014
  • AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2013
  • AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2012
  • AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2011
  • Lewis L. Fenton Award for Excellence in Advocacy
  • Monterey County Bar Association
  • 2010
  • AV Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 1993
  • AV Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 1992
  • AV Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 1991
View all awards

Attorney endorsements

Received (1)
Given (0)
Endorse David
Criminal defense Attorney | Jan 26
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse this lawyer. I have worked with Mike Lawrence on cases and seen him work for many years. He is a widely respected attorney who is known for creative and aggressive defense strategies."
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Salinas Criminal defense Lawyer David Michael Lawrence
David Michael Lawrence
Criminal defense Attorney
Salinas, CA
Licensed for 55 years
Free Consultation