How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

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

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:46 pm

I had to write a SOI for a government position, and I wrote about a page single-spaced (might not have been all the way to the bottom?). Honestly, I think a good one can help, because I got an interview for that jerb with very little relevant experience.

brassmonkey7
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby brassmonkey7 » Wed Aug 28, 2013 4:39 pm

Scotusnerd wrote:This is a side but related topic: does anyone have any experience in applying to work in criminal appeals or post-conviction relief departments?


Hey there- I applied to a few appellate PD positions for post-grad before ultimately accepting a trial one. Your writing sample, unsurprisingly, is hugely important. Every appellate PD I applied to wanted one, and the only one that did not ask for one in advance required me to complete a closed universe writing exercise. The writing sample is therefore a huge deciding factor in whether you will be interviewed and ultimately hired. I was told by a practicing appellate PD that a solid writing sample consisting of say a brief in a civil appeal would be better than a weaker criminal defense-oriented writing sample FWIW. Bear in mind also that as an appellate PD you will work in state court and so if you really want appeals consider an internship with an appellate justice or even a trial judge in your desired jurisdiction. State supreme court law is the law of the land for state appellate PDs. I know I got one of my interviews because I'd done some appellate work in the relevant jurisdiction and had some familiarity with some state law quirks because of it. Also consider doing anything you can in school to improve and highlight your writing skills, e.g., definitely participate in moot court, run for an editor position on journal, take a crim law seminar and write a long paper about crim, etc. Where trial pds worry about your ability to get up in court on day one, appellate PDs worry about your ability to bang out a solid brief on day one.

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

Postby Scotusnerd » Wed Aug 28, 2013 6:26 pm

brassmonkey7 wrote:
Hey there- I applied to a few appellate PD positions for post-grad before ultimately accepting a trial one. Your writing sample, unsurprisingly, is hugely important. Every appellate PD I applied to wanted one, and the only one that did not ask for one in advance required me to complete a closed universe writing exercise. The writing sample is therefore a huge deciding factor in whether you will be interviewed and ultimately hired. I was told by a practicing appellate PD that a solid writing sample consisting of say a brief in a civil appeal would be better than a weaker criminal defense-oriented writing sample FWIW. Bear in mind also that as an appellate PD you will work in state court and so if you really want appeals consider an internship with an appellate justice or even a trial judge in your desired jurisdiction. State supreme court law is the law of the land for state appellate PDs. I know I got one of my interviews because I'd done some appellate work in the relevant jurisdiction and had some familiarity with some state law quirks because of it. Also consider doing anything you can in school to improve and highlight your writing skills, e.g., definitely participate in moot court, run for an editor position on journal, take a crim law seminar and write a long paper about crim, etc. Where trial pds worry about your ability to get up in court on day one, appellate PDs worry about your ability to bang out a solid brief on day one.


Hey, thanks for posting that! That's really helpful. :D

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

Postby floofernut » Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:30 pm

delete
Last edited by floofernut on Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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

Postby Void » Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:56 pm

brassmonkey7 wrote:
Scotusnerd wrote:This is a side but related topic: does anyone have any experience in applying to work in criminal appeals or post-conviction relief departments?


Hey there- I applied to a few appellate PD positions for post-grad before ultimately accepting a trial one. Your writing sample, unsurprisingly, is hugely important. Every appellate PD I applied to wanted one, and the only one that did not ask for one in advance required me to complete a closed universe writing exercise. The writing sample is therefore a huge deciding factor in whether you will be interviewed and ultimately hired. I was told by a practicing appellate PD that a solid writing sample consisting of say a brief in a civil appeal would be better than a weaker criminal defense-oriented writing sample FWIW. Bear in mind also that as an appellate PD you will work in state court and so if you really want appeals consider an internship with an appellate justice or even a trial judge in your desired jurisdiction. State supreme court law is the law of the land for state appellate PDs. I know I got one of my interviews because I'd done some appellate work in the relevant jurisdiction and had some familiarity with some state law quirks because of it. Also consider doing anything you can in school to improve and highlight your writing skills, e.g., definitely participate in moot court, run for an editor position on journal, take a crim law seminar and write a long paper about crim, etc. Where trial pds worry about your ability to get up in court on day one, appellate PDs worry about your ability to bang out a solid brief on day one.


My ultimate career goal is to move up to appellate. I have never heard of a state that hires recent grads in the appellate office, but obviously this is a regional thing. Around here you cut your teeth doing basic arraignments and stuff for while then a few years of trials before you even have a shot at appellate.

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

Postby adonai » Wed Aug 28, 2013 9:16 pm

Void wrote:
brassmonkey7 wrote:
Scotusnerd wrote:This is a side but related topic: does anyone have any experience in applying to work in criminal appeals or post-conviction relief departments?


Hey there- I applied to a few appellate PD positions for post-grad before ultimately accepting a trial one. Your writing sample, unsurprisingly, is hugely important. Every appellate PD I applied to wanted one, and the only one that did not ask for one in advance required me to complete a closed universe writing exercise. The writing sample is therefore a huge deciding factor in whether you will be interviewed and ultimately hired. I was told by a practicing appellate PD that a solid writing sample consisting of say a brief in a civil appeal would be better than a weaker criminal defense-oriented writing sample FWIW. Bear in mind also that as an appellate PD you will work in state court and so if you really want appeals consider an internship with an appellate justice or even a trial judge in your desired jurisdiction. State supreme court law is the law of the land for state appellate PDs. I know I got one of my interviews because I'd done some appellate work in the relevant jurisdiction and had some familiarity with some state law quirks because of it. Also consider doing anything you can in school to improve and highlight your writing skills, e.g., definitely participate in moot court, run for an editor position on journal, take a crim law seminar and write a long paper about crim, etc. Where trial pds worry about your ability to get up in court on day one, appellate PDs worry about your ability to bang out a solid brief on day one.


My ultimate career goal is to move up to appellate. I have never heard of a state that hires recent grads in the appellate office, but obviously this is a regional thing. Around here you cut your teeth doing basic arraignments and stuff for while then a few years of trials before you even have a shot at appellate.

I remember reading some article where it said being placed in appellate was a career death sentence, and that you were placed there for a reason. They can't fire you because you're a civil servant, so they place you somewhere where the public can't see you and where you can't be in front of a judge/jury. Do you find this to be true?

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

Postby BlueLotus » Wed Aug 28, 2013 9:18 pm

spleenworship wrote:
golfer89 wrote:Yeah only 3 jobs showing up for me as well.



They are filling me with confidence right now.


It's now showing 68 employers. Must've been a temporary glitch.

Any tips from 3Ls who've been successful at EJW?

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

Postby Void » Wed Aug 28, 2013 9:28 pm

adonai wrote:
Void wrote:
brassmonkey7 wrote:
Scotusnerd wrote:This is a side but related topic: does anyone have any experience in applying to work in criminal appeals or post-conviction relief departments?


Hey there- I applied to a few appellate PD positions for post-grad before ultimately accepting a trial one. Your writing sample, unsurprisingly, is hugely important. Every appellate PD I applied to wanted one, and the only one that did not ask for one in advance required me to complete a closed universe writing exercise. The writing sample is therefore a huge deciding factor in whether you will be interviewed and ultimately hired. I was told by a practicing appellate PD that a solid writing sample consisting of say a brief in a civil appeal would be better than a weaker criminal defense-oriented writing sample FWIW. Bear in mind also that as an appellate PD you will work in state court and so if you really want appeals consider an internship with an appellate justice or even a trial judge in your desired jurisdiction. State supreme court law is the law of the land for state appellate PDs. I know I got one of my interviews because I'd done some appellate work in the relevant jurisdiction and had some familiarity with some state law quirks because of it. Also consider doing anything you can in school to improve and highlight your writing skills, e.g., definitely participate in moot court, run for an editor position on journal, take a crim law seminar and write a long paper about crim, etc. Where trial pds worry about your ability to get up in court on day one, appellate PDs worry about your ability to bang out a solid brief on day one.


My ultimate career goal is to move up to appellate. I have never heard of a state that hires recent grads in the appellate office, but obviously this is a regional thing. Around here you cut your teeth doing basic arraignments and stuff for while then a few years of trials before you even have a shot at appellate.

I remember reading some article where it said being placed in appellate was a career death sentence, and that you were placed there for a reason. They can't fire you because you're a civil servant, so they place you somewhere where the public can't see you and where you can't be in front of a judge/jury. Do you find this to be true?


I think that probably was written by someone who got into PD/DA work because s/he wanted to be a trial lawyer. I have almost no interest in being a badass bombastic trial attorney- I am more attracted to PD work for broader policy reasons, and I also did a lot of criminal appellate stuff in law school and found it fascinating. But yeah, I think appellate work can be unpopular with a lot of PD/DA types because they would rather be dramatically cross examining someone than drafting a brief about some small double jeopardy technicality of whatever. Even so, as I said above, around here there is 0% chance of getting appellate PD work without years of experience.

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

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:31 am

I interned with the appellate division of my state AG's office, and they told me, "appellate lawyers, we don't get out much." So there was truth to the out-of-the-public-eye thing. But I think getting into the field/what it means depends on where you are. The way my state was organized, people had to be good writers to get the appellate gig - the state hires people expressly for appellate, independent of their other prosecution experience (the PD's office does the same thing). So it's certainly not somewhere to stick a PD/DA that you don't know what else to do with (though that could be true in other states organized differently, I suppose). I also don't think years and years of experience were required. Doing a state appellate clerkship was a huge benefit - there were tons of former state clerks in those offices - but I've also seen close-to-entry-level positions posted (I think they usually wanted at least 1 year of experience).

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

Postby Borhas » Thu Aug 29, 2013 2:56 am

BlueLotus wrote:
spleenworship wrote:
golfer89 wrote:Yeah only 3 jobs showing up for me as well.



They are filling me with confidence right now.


It's now showing 68 employers. Must've been a temporary glitch.

Any tips from 3Ls who've been successful at EJW?

Schedule most important interviews last so you are adequately warmed up

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

Postby lmr » Tue Sep 03, 2013 10:19 pm

Do some PD offices do post-bar interviews just for the sake of doing them? Like they have no intention of hiring candidates but just interview to say their attorneys beat out hundreds? dumb question i know, but seems like anyone with a semi-interest in pi work gets an interview...

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

Postby Tanicius » Tue Sep 03, 2013 10:22 pm

lmr wrote:Do some PD offices do post-bar interviews just for the sake of doing them? Like they have no intention of hiring candidates but just interview to say their attorneys beat out hundreds? dumb question i know, but seems like anyone with a semi-interest in pi work gets an interview...


That's not been my experience. I know a lot of people who have applied for campus interviews with local PD offices over the years who don't get the face-to-face. Resume pre-selects are a pretty easy way for PD offices to cut the wheat from the chaff.

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

Postby lmr » Tue Sep 03, 2013 11:08 pm

Tanicius wrote:
lmr wrote:Do some PD offices do post-bar interviews just for the sake of doing them? Like they have no intention of hiring candidates but just interview to say their attorneys beat out hundreds? dumb question i know, but seems like anyone with a semi-interest in pi work gets an interview...


That's not been my experience. I know a lot of people who have applied for campus interviews with local PD offices over the years who don't get the face-to-face. Resume pre-selects are a pretty easy way for PD offices to cut the wheat from the chaff.


Thanks...feel less discouraged going into my interviews.

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

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 04, 2013 7:09 pm

Has anyone had success in Florida PD offices for post-grad yet? Do they usually hire early or late? Does Jacksonville hire pre-bar as well?

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

Postby spleenworship » Thu Sep 05, 2013 10:50 am

Cover letters for other market PDs where my interest in them is primarily 1) I want a job and 2) they are close to one or more medical schools my wife wants.... try to come up with some reason I want to be there which might sound insincere, or just mention how awesome (relatively) I am and that I really want to serve the indigent and hope for the best?

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

Postby lmr » Thu Sep 05, 2013 6:23 pm

spleenworship wrote:Cover letters for other market PDs where my interest in them is primarily 1) I want a job and 2) they are close to one or more medical schools my wife wants.... try to come up with some reason I want to be there which might sound insincere, or just mention how awesome (relatively) I am and that I really want to serve the indigent and hope for the best?


just point out some fact specific to the office itself, rather than the geographic location. Every PD has a different culture and likes to think their approach is the best, so just talk about that.

Myself
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.

Postby Myself » Thu Sep 05, 2013 6:28 pm

.
Last edited by Myself on Wed Nov 27, 2013 2:37 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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

Postby spleenworship » Thu Sep 05, 2013 6:34 pm

ajax adonis wrote:
lmr wrote:
spleenworship wrote:Cover letters for other market PDs where my interest in them is primarily 1) I want a job and 2) they are close to one or more medical schools my wife wants.... try to come up with some reason I want to be there which might sound insincere, or just mention how awesome (relatively) I am and that I really want to serve the indigent and hope for the best?


just point out some fact specific to the office itself, rather than the geographic location. Every PD has a different culture and likes to think their approach is the best, so just talk about that.


This is good too. Instead of saying, I'm interested in San Francisco, say why you're interested in that particular San Francisco PD office.


Thanks guys!

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AreJay711
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby AreJay711 » Fri Sep 06, 2013 11:18 am

lmr wrote:
spleenworship wrote:Cover letters for other market PDs where my interest in them is primarily 1) I want a job and 2) they are close to one or more medical schools my wife wants.... try to come up with some reason I want to be there which might sound insincere, or just mention how awesome (relatively) I am and that I really want to serve the indigent and hope for the best?


just point out some fact specific to the office itself, rather than the geographic location. Every PD has a different culture and likes to think their approach is the best, so just talk about that.


How would we find this out? Calling up an alum would seem like a good idea, but I don't know of any in my number one market. I'm a little worried about contacting the people who's number I can find because they are all the head of districts and probably part of the hiring process.

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

Postby spleenworship » Fri Sep 06, 2013 12:27 pm

AreJay711 wrote:
lmr wrote:
spleenworship wrote:Cover letters for other market PDs where my interest in them is primarily 1) I want a job and 2) they are close to one or more medical schools my wife wants.... try to come up with some reason I want to be there which might sound insincere, or just mention how awesome (relatively) I am and that I really want to serve the indigent and hope for the best?


just point out some fact specific to the office itself, rather than the geographic location. Every PD has a different culture and likes to think their approach is the best, so just talk about that.


How would we find this out? Calling up an alum would seem like a good idea, but I don't know of any in my number one market. I'm a little worried about contacting the people who's number I can find because they are all the head of districts and probably part of the hiring process.


I checked out their websites. A lot of times they have info about the office, their philosophy, etc.

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

Postby lmr » Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:54 pm

Just had an interview and attorney's reaction has me second guessing myself-i don't want to post online bc it'd out me but if someone argues towards duty for client and/or AC at the expense of the da's case--that's the proper answer, right? It's just a screener-can't be too much to it-right?!

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

Postby Void » Fri Sep 06, 2013 9:10 pm

lmr wrote:Just had an interview and attorney's reaction has me second guessing myself-i don't want to post online bc it'd out me but if someone argues towards duty for client and/or AC at the expense of the da's case--that's the proper answer, right? It's just a screener-can't be too much to it-right?!


I don't really know what you're asking. AC?

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

Postby lmr » Fri Sep 06, 2013 9:22 pm

Void wrote:
lmr wrote:Just had an interview and attorney's reaction has me second guessing myself-i don't want to post online bc it'd out me but if someone argues towards duty for client and/or AC at the expense of the da's case--that's the proper answer, right? It's just a screener-can't be too much to it-right?!


I don't really know what you're asking. AC?


attorney client privilege-basically da dismisses case based on not knowing something client tells me in the courtroom that the da is wrong. I'm supposed to shut up, right?

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anon sequitur
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Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby anon sequitur » Fri Sep 06, 2013 9:27 pm

lmr wrote:
attorney client privilege-basically da dismisses case based on not knowing something client tells me in the courtroom that the da is wrong. I'm supposed to shut up, right?


I got this hypo a few weeks ago in an interview, wonder if it's the same guy. Yeah, you shouldn't give up the client, but my take is that's just the surface level, they're also looking to see how you handle your relationship with the DA, judge, etc.

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

Postby adonai » Fri Sep 06, 2013 9:58 pm

I always thought of it as the People's burden to prove defendant is guilty. I think PD only has duty to hand over all discovery, so no disclosure as to what defendant told the PD. That would defeat the purpose of having a defense attorney. Check your local ethics rules. When it comes to AC privilege, the attorney MUST disclose AC privileged info in certain instances, and MAY do so in other instances.

Your interviewer probably made strange faces to gauge your reaction, to see if you would stick to your decision, or succumb to the pressure and babble all over the place.
Last edited by adonai on Fri Sep 06, 2013 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.




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