How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

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Anonymous User
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 07, 2013 5:23 pm

I am a 2L and so far I have spent a lot of law school on becoming a PD but lately I've been thinking about taking my school's prosecution clinic (gasp!). I am thinking about taking it for two reasons: A) I think it would be useful to have some understanding of how the other side operates and B) I'd like to be able to possibly cast a wider net employment wise.

I'm not sure if I'm completely out of the running for a DA job considering that I will have worked at PD's both my 1L and 2L summer, and will have done my school's pd clinic etc.. Many private criminal defense attorneys have told me that they think starting out at a DA is the best training you can get to be a good defense attorney, so I'm kind of interested in this path. I also recognize the DA's role and think that it is a very important and admirable career to have.

THAT said, my goal is to be a public defender and if you guys think that taking the clinic will jeopardize my chances of employment in that area then I will probably just find another clinic to do.

I have tons of time to figure out which clinics to apply to for my 3L year but any advice from you guys to mull over would be great.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue May 07, 2013 5:35 pm

I do think PDs tend to see any work on the prosecution side as Not Good. Private criminal defense attorneys are sort of a different breed - tons of them (that I've seen) started as prosecutors, then move to the other side, but they're not necessarily in the same position as PDs. (My impression is that prosecutors are more tolerant of defense experience than the other way around.)

But this is based on received wisdom, rather than my personal experience. Does your school not offer a criminal defense clinic? If there's absolutely no other way you can get court/trial experience, maybe you could spin it as that... but it could be dodgy.

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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 07, 2013 6:32 pm

I already did the criminal defense clinic at my school. I've talked with that professor about trying to arrange for some more experience via an externship type thing but its pretty unclear as to whether or not that will work out. I could get more court time doing civil stuff but I'm not sure if that would be as useful.

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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Rootbeer » Tue May 07, 2013 10:40 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:I do think PDs tend to see any work on the prosecution side as Not Good. Private criminal defense attorneys are sort of a different breed - tons of them (that I've seen) started as prosecutors, then move to the other side, but they're not necessarily in the same position as PDs. (My impression is that prosecutors are more tolerant of defense experience than the other way around.)

But this is based on received wisdom, rather than my personal experience. Does your school not offer a criminal defense clinic? If there's absolutely no other way you can get court/trial experience, maybe you could spin it as that... but it could be dodgy.


All confirmed. Prosecution positions are poison to PDs unless you're in a place where there's a shortage. I've heard this directly from people who are responsible for hiring.

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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Rootbeer » Tue May 07, 2013 10:54 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I already did the criminal defense clinic at my school. I've talked with that professor about trying to arrange for some more experience via an externship type thing but its pretty unclear as to whether or not that will work out. I could get more court time doing civil stuff but I'm not sure if that would be as useful.


You're better off doing civil if you can't keep doing PD work. If it's civil assistance to the indigent, even better. PDs like to see dedication to helping the indigent and the counseling practice you'll get is every bit as important as the easy as pie stuff they let interns do in court.

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Borhas
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Borhas » Tue May 07, 2013 11:46 pm

Rootbeer wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I already did the criminal defense clinic at my school. I've talked with that professor about trying to arrange for some more experience via an externship type thing but its pretty unclear as to whether or not that will work out. I could get more court time doing civil stuff but I'm not sure if that would be as useful.


You're better off doing civil if you can't keep doing PD work. If it's civil assistance to the indigent, even better. PDs like to see dedication to helping the indigent and the counseling practice you'll get is every bit as important as the easy as pie stuff they let interns do in court.

+1
Immigration in particular would be a good choice, or anything that lets you handle hearings and involves client interaction

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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed May 08, 2013 8:04 am

yeah, thats what I've been told from most pd's I've talked to, there's just been a lot of noise on the other end from the private defense guys I've been talking to. I already have pretty solid experience in civil legal assistance type stuff and I guess that expanding on that via clinics would also be a good way to cast a broader net for PI type employment.

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Borhas
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Borhas » Thu May 09, 2013 4:38 pm

Anyone have any info on Colorado PD's 2nd round interview? Or can you link me to the part of this thread that has relevant posts? I have a 2nd round interview Monday and I'd like to know what to expect.

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Ded Precedent
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Ded Precedent » Sun May 12, 2013 7:57 am

1L here about to start a summer position at my second choice office. However, I just received an email from my first choice office asking if I would still like to intern this summer (they've been ignoring my emails for like 2 months). Is it too late to bail on the TTT office and go where I wanted to in the first place? I'm supposed to start there on the 20th.

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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon May 13, 2013 12:32 am

Borhas wrote:Anyone have any info on Colorado PD's 2nd round interview? Or can you link me to the part of this thread that has relevant posts? I have a 2nd round interview Monday and I'd like to know what to expect.


My second round was with Frances Brown and it was conversational with no hypos. I don't think that Brian Connors uses hypos either, but I've heard that Doug Wilson does. (I'm assuming you're talking about post-grad hiring).

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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby seatown12 » Mon May 13, 2013 10:15 am

Ded Precedent wrote:1L here about to start a summer position at my second choice office. However, I just received an email from my first choice office asking if I would still like to intern this summer (they've been ignoring my emails for like 2 months). Is it too late to bail on the TTT office and go where I wanted to in the first place? I'm supposed to start there on the 20th.

Is the first choice office known to hire consistently, and do they show a preference for former interns?

In this market you need to be ruthlessly self-interested, but you don't want to get to 3L and realize your first choice isn't hiring and the only job available is with the office you spurned one week from your internship start date.

One option could be to explain to the first choice that you have already accepted another (PD/DA) position but are very interested in their office and will absolutely be applying for next summer, and ask what you can do to maximize your chance of working there.

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Borhas
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Borhas » Mon May 13, 2013 3:20 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Borhas wrote:Anyone have any info on Colorado PD's 2nd round interview? Or can you link me to the part of this thread that has relevant posts? I have a 2nd round interview Monday and I'd like to know what to expect.


My second round was with Frances Brown and it was conversational with no hypos. I don't think that Brian Connors uses hypos either, but I've heard that Doug Wilson does. (I'm assuming you're talking about post-grad hiring).


Ok so I had my interview. I got a job offer at the end of it. (!!!) :D

He basically just explained why they are hiring so many new PD's. There were the standard why PD? Why trial lawyer? Q's and then we just sort of chatted about the questions I had about colorado's office and legal system.

Anyone else who has an interview with them coming up, my guess is that if you don't totally F up the interview you will get a job offer. Can't start working until the new fiscal year starts though, so not until January 2nd, 2014.

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Tanicius
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Tanicius » Mon May 13, 2013 4:41 pm

Borhas wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Borhas wrote:Anyone have any info on Colorado PD's 2nd round interview? Or can you link me to the part of this thread that has relevant posts? I have a 2nd round interview Monday and I'd like to know what to expect.


My second round was with Frances Brown and it was conversational with no hypos. I don't think that Brian Connors uses hypos either, but I've heard that Doug Wilson does. (I'm assuming you're talking about post-grad hiring).


Ok so I had my interview. I got a job offer at the end of it. (!!!) :D

He basically just explained why they are hiring so many new PD's. There were the standard why PD? Why trial lawyer? Q's and then we just sort of chatted about the questions I had about colorado's office and legal system.

Anyone else who has an interview with them coming up, my guess is that if you don't totally F up the interview you will get a job offer. Can't start working until the new fiscal year starts though, so not until January 2nd, 2014.



Wow! Congratulations!

So, why are they hiring so many newbies?

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Borhas
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Borhas » Mon May 13, 2013 5:30 pm

They got more funding because the legislature changed some law that didn't provide pd's to several low level crim charges. Now that the pd's rep them there will be more cases. I think they'll hire like 50 new PDs.

seatown12
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby seatown12 » Mon May 13, 2013 5:33 pm

Borhas wrote:They got more funding because the legislature changed some law that didn't provide pd's to several low level crim charges. Now that the pd's rep them there will be more cases. I think they'll hire like 50 new PDs.

they're off to a good start; congrats

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Ded Precedent
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Ded Precedent » Mon May 13, 2013 7:17 pm

seatown12 wrote:
Ded Precedent wrote:1L here about to start a summer position at my second choice office. However, I just received an email from my first choice office asking if I would still like to intern this summer (they've been ignoring my emails for like 2 months). Is it too late to bail on the TTT office and go where I wanted to in the first place? I'm supposed to start there on the 20th.

Is the first choice office known to hire consistently, and do they show a preference for former interns?

In this market you need to be ruthlessly self-interested, but you don't want to get to 3L and realize your first choice isn't hiring and the only job available is with the office you spurned one week from your internship start date.

One option could be to explain to the first choice that you have already accepted another (PD/DA) position but are very interested in their office and will absolutely be applying for next summer, and ask what you can do to maximize your chance of working there.

This is exactly what I'm worried about. My first choice is Cook County so I'm not sure exactly how they go about hiring.

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Tanicius
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Tanicius » Mon May 13, 2013 7:24 pm

Borhas wrote:They got more funding because the legislature changed some law that didn't provide pd's to several low level crim charges. Now that the pd's rep them there will be more cases. I think they'll hire like 50 new PDs.



Did you have ties at all? If not, what do you think made you attractive to them?

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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon May 13, 2013 8:58 pm

Ded Precedent wrote:
seatown12 wrote:
Ded Precedent wrote:1L here about to start a summer position at my second choice office. However, I just received an email from my first choice office asking if I would still like to intern this summer (they've been ignoring my emails for like 2 months). Is it too late to bail on the TTT office and go where I wanted to in the first place? I'm supposed to start there on the 20th.

Is the first choice office known to hire consistently, and do they show a preference for former interns?

In this market you need to be ruthlessly self-interested, but you don't want to get to 3L and realize your first choice isn't hiring and the only job available is with the office you spurned one week from your internship start date.

One option could be to explain to the first choice that you have already accepted another (PD/DA) position but are very interested in their office and will absolutely be applying for next summer, and ask what you can do to maximize your chance of working there.

This is exactly what I'm worried about. My first choice is Cook County so I'm not sure exactly how they go about hiring.


Ha. Sounds about right for Cook County (if you're talking about the State's Attorney's Office, not PD). For what it's worth, Cook County hires a class every year - in recent years it's been about 25 in May, with a bunch more on the waitlist who eventually get hired. But you definitely have to intern there to have a shot. Even then it's pretty hard so it's not a bad idea to have a backup plan. There's a Cook County thread near the top of the Employment board that you might want to check out.

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Borhas
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Borhas » Tue May 14, 2013 2:11 am

Tanicius wrote:
Borhas wrote:They got more funding because the legislature changed some law that didn't provide pd's to several low level crim charges. Now that the pd's rep them there will be more cases. I think they'll hire like 50 new PDs.



Did you have ties at all? If not, what do you think made you attractive to them?


0 ties

I have a lot of criminal defense experience, 1L and 2L summer internships at big city PD offices, criminal practice clinic during 2L spring semester. Clerk (part time) at private criminal defense firm during 3L.

I've handled some hearings but never had a trial.

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Ded Precedent
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Ded Precedent » Tue May 14, 2013 2:16 am

Borhas wrote:I have a lot of criminal defense experience, 1L and 2L summer internships at big city PD offices, criminal practice clinic during 2L spring semester. Clerk (part time) at private criminal defense firm during 3L.

I've handled some hearings but never had a trial.

What was your class rank? How heavily did they consider your grades?

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Borhas
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Borhas » Tue May 14, 2013 9:21 am

Ded Precedent wrote:
Borhas wrote:I have a lot of criminal defense experience, 1L and 2L summer internships at big city PD offices, criminal practice clinic during 2L spring semester. Clerk (part time) at private criminal defense firm during 3L.

I've handled some hearings but never had a trial.

What was your class rank? How heavily did they consider your grades?


I don't know my rank, maybe median to top 1/3

They never asked about grades

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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 14, 2013 9:23 am

Colorado PD does not care about grades at all.

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gdane
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby gdane » Wed May 22, 2013 12:02 pm

Kinda curious if anyone knows. Do the major TX DAs offices only hire post bar?

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed May 22, 2013 12:31 pm

gdane wrote:Kinda curious if anyone knows. Do the major TX DAs offices only hire post bar?

I know someone in either Dallas or Houston (sorry, so helpful!) and they only hired post-bar.

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deadpanic
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby deadpanic » Wed May 22, 2013 1:38 pm

gdane wrote:Kinda curious if anyone knows. Do the major TX DAs offices only hire post bar?


Yes, only post bar. Same for TN & some other states.




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