How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
User avatar
Gettingstarted1928
Posts: 407
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2011 11:45 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Gettingstarted1928 » Thu Nov 24, 2011 1:58 pm

What really sucks right now is that (unlike other government fields) these offices are not really feeling the pinch and neither is the public. The reason is that they're able to hire JD GRADUATES who will work for for free. If this wasn't the case, I'm sure PD/ADA offices and the public would demand a change when people are sitting on the docket for a ridiculously long time.

This whole "work for free" thing has got to be an invention of this economy, and it's killing us lowly govt. workers.


I know I'm ranting. My mom made me turn off Boardwalk Empire, because she said it's too violent for Thanksgiving.

User avatar
sandiecohen47
Posts: 178
Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2009 9:37 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby sandiecohen47 » Thu Nov 24, 2011 2:04 pm

Borhas wrote:
sandiecohen47 wrote:
Borhas wrote:How relevant is post-conviction work? I got a call back interview tomorrow w/ DC PD Services, and while I'd love to spend a summer working there, it's not with the Trial Division, it's with the Community Defender Division, specifically with the Institutional Services Program... which deals w/ how prisoners are treated, and their issues, etc.

My gut says working at local PD office would still be a better experience... though I do have personal (non-career/family) reasons for wanting to spend summer in DC.


Borhas, I will be at PDS this summer in the Trial Division. What I know about the Community Defender Division is that you get to represent clients in hearings. So, it is EXTREMELY relevant (or at least more relevant than an FPD). One of my friends at Boalt did it last summer and absolutely loved it. PM me for more details.


Got an email from them yesterday, I'll be at PDS this summer as well :D


CONGRATS, BORHAS! So happy for you. See you in DC this summer! :-D

dreakol
Posts: 572
Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2010 1:56 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby dreakol » Thu Nov 24, 2011 5:18 pm

ok ok, i'm still a little confused after reading this thread

how did you guys go about geting work at a DA's office your 1L summer? Some of them have instructions on their website, but a few of the offices i want to target dont have any info posted. I was planning on calling them and asking, but that seems too simple. am I over thinking this? Also, if they say they want grades, should I wait to apply, or just apply and inform them that I will update when grades come in?

User avatar
Gettingstarted1928
Posts: 407
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2011 11:45 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Gettingstarted1928 » Thu Nov 24, 2011 11:23 pm

dreakol wrote:ok ok, i'm still a little confused after reading this thread

how did you guys go about geting work at a DA's office your 1L summer? Some of them have instructions on their website, but a few of the offices i want to target dont have any info posted. I was planning on calling them and asking, but that seems too simple. am I over thinking this? Also, if they say they want grades, should I wait to apply, or just apply and inform them that I will update when grades come in?


I'm applying before grades like everyone else. Also, I'm going to read there websites if there are any special instructions. If they don't have a website or the website doesn't give any guidance, I'm just going to go ahead and send them my resume/cover letter.

User avatar
Borhas
Posts: 4862
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 6:09 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Borhas » Fri Nov 25, 2011 1:25 pm

dreakol wrote:ok ok, i'm still a little confused after reading this thread

how did you guys go about geting work at a DA's office your 1L summer? Some of them have instructions on their website, but a few of the offices i want to target dont have any info posted. I was planning on calling them and asking, but that seems too simple. am I over thinking this? Also, if they say they want grades, should I wait to apply, or just apply and inform them that I will update when grades come in?


If you can give a coherent explanation of why you want to be a DA, and how you could make a decent DA in a cover letter, than apply before grades come out.

step 1: look at their websites for application procedures
step 2: ask faculty in your school about hiring procedures (if your school has a criminal clinic the person who runs that is probable in the best position to know), address your cover letter to whoever this person tells you to contact
step 3: email (or snail mail if they specifically ask for it) your resume and cover letter on Dec. 1

if your profs don't know anyone at the offices, then just call and ask

dreakol
Posts: 572
Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2010 1:56 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby dreakol » Fri Nov 25, 2011 3:19 pm

Borhas wrote:
dreakol wrote:ok ok, i'm still a little confused after reading this thread

how did you guys go about geting work at a DA's office your 1L summer? Some of them have instructions on their website, but a few of the offices i want to target dont have any info posted. I was planning on calling them and asking, but that seems too simple. am I over thinking this? Also, if they say they want grades, should I wait to apply, or just apply and inform them that I will update when grades come in?


If you can give a coherent explanation of why you want to be a DA, and how you could make a decent DA in a cover letter, than apply before grades come out.

step 1: look at their websites for application procedures
step 2: ask faculty in your school about hiring procedures (if your school has a criminal clinic the person who runs that is probable in the best position to know), address your cover letter to whoever this person tells you to contact
step 3: email (or snail mail if they specifically ask for it) your resume and cover letter on Dec. 1

if your profs don't know anyone at the offices, then just call and ask


tyty

User avatar
FlanAl
Posts: 1474
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2010 4:53 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby FlanAl » Sat Dec 03, 2011 9:46 pm

not exactly sure if it counts as prosecution (do state attorney general's offices or city attorney's offices count?) but does anyone know about the new CA attorney general honors program. looks like its first class will be 2012-2014.

Geist13
Posts: 739
Joined: Sat Oct 10, 2009 3:21 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Geist13 » Sat Dec 03, 2011 11:43 pm

FlanAl wrote:not exactly sure if it counts as prosecution (do state attorney general's offices or city attorney's offices count?) but does anyone know about the new CA attorney general honors program. looks like its first class will be 2012-2014.


the pay looks decent for that type of job. It doesn't lead to full time employment, unless you apply after the two years and they hire you. I'm not really sure what they get out of it since it pays (they have to train you and then don't get your services after two years once you're finally able to do something on your own). Other state AG offices have similar two year programs which are unpaid. Its probably competitive as hell.

Re: AG as prosecution, they aren't really prosecutors. There will be certain types of crimes that an AG's office is responsible for prosecuting but it usually won't be your everyday felony prosecution (distribution, murder etc.). In many states AG will handle criminal appeals. They'll focus more on civil matters. However, in the DA's office I worked at, a number of the younger prosecutors considered the AG's office as the end goal.

City attorney is likely just a different name for district attorney (i.e. trial level criminal prosecution). Some states call them State's Attorneys, other County Attorney, other District Attorney. All names for the same thing (but different from attorney General).

seatown12
Posts: 614
Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2009 9:16 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby seatown12 » Sun Dec 04, 2011 1:14 am

Geist13 wrote:City attorney is likely just a different name for district attorney (i.e. trial level criminal prosecution). Some states call them State's Attorneys, other County Attorney, other District Attorney. All names for the same thing (but different from attorney General).

No; city attorneys, at least in Seattle and LA for sure, represent the city in civil suits and prosecute misdemeanors and other minor crimes. They're actually more like AGs.

Geist13
Posts: 739
Joined: Sat Oct 10, 2009 3:21 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Geist13 » Sun Dec 04, 2011 1:55 am

seatown12 wrote:
Geist13 wrote:City attorney is likely just a different name for district attorney (i.e. trial level criminal prosecution). Some states call them State's Attorneys, other County Attorney, other District Attorney. All names for the same thing (but different from attorney General).

No; city attorneys, at least in Seattle and LA for sure, represent the city in civil suits and prosecute misdemeanors and other minor crimes. They're actually more like AGs.


ah, thanks for the clarification.

User avatar
Borhas
Posts: 4862
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 6:09 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Borhas » Sun Dec 04, 2011 3:17 pm

Geist13 wrote:
FlanAl wrote:not exactly sure if it counts as prosecution (do state attorney general's offices or city attorney's offices count?) but does anyone know about the new CA attorney general honors program. looks like its first class will be 2012-2014.


the pay looks decent for that type of job. It doesn't lead to full time employment, unless you apply after the two years and they hire you. I'm not really sure what they get out of it since it pays (they have to train you and then don't get your services after two years once you're finally able to do something on your own). Other state AG offices have similar two year programs which are unpaid. Its probably competitive as hell.

Re: AG as prosecution, they aren't really prosecutors. There will be certain types of crimes that an AG's office is responsible for prosecuting but it usually won't be your everyday felony prosecution (distribution, murder etc.). In many states AG will handle criminal appeals. They'll focus more on civil matters. However, in the DA's office I worked at, a number of the younger prosecutors considered the AG's office as the end goal.

City attorney is likely just a different name for district attorney (i.e. trial level criminal prosecution). Some states call them State's Attorneys, other County Attorney, other District Attorney. All names for the same thing (but different from attorney General).


City Attorneys office also handle civil and quasi criminal issues sometimes too, sometimes its just a nominal difference but other times there are substantial differences.

San Francisco may be a bit of a unique example (because the City and County of SF are the exact same thing) but the City Attorney and District Attorney are substantially different.

EDIT: I see it was cleared up already, woops

Anonymous User
Posts: 273601
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 05, 2011 11:19 am

If I have the option to do an internship as an 0L at the county prosecutor's office that I would ultimately like to end up at, should I leave my current job for the opportunity? Here is my thinking and situation -

-1yr out of undergrad, starting school next fall, currently have a low-paying state job that is relevant in some obscure ways to criminal law, but the office I work at is not anywhere near the county I want to work at.

-County contains a larger metropolitan city, but is not one that is (to my knowledge) crazy competitive like chicago/ny.

-The law school I will be attending next fall is in the county I want to work in and has the best reputation of any other school in that area, so getting a 1L/2L internship there is definitely do-able. However, I don't want to take any chances, and feel like doing an internship/volunteer work as an 0L will give me that much more of a chance (resume/demonstrated interest in that office/networking)

With all of that in mind, would doing an internship as an 0L, provided I can get one at this office, be worth it? Or is it easier than I think (with preparation and the proper credentials, of course) to get an internship in the office you want for your 1L/2L summer?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273601
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 05, 2011 1:55 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Miami Dade just sent me a snail mail offer to interview. I will have to cover travel expenses which stinks but isn't totally unexpected.


I also received an offer to interview at Miami. Did you respond by email or phone? I've emailed and it's been about a week and still no response. I guess I will have to call to schedule the interview.


Same boat. Left voicemail, realized that he is probably swamped so sent email. Almost 2 weeks now without a reply....


Anyone that received an offer to interview at Miami heard back? Voicemails and Emails have gotten no response. I will try again but lack of communication may make my travel arrangements much more difficult.

User avatar
leobowski
Posts: 511
Joined: Mon Mar 09, 2009 2:11 am

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby leobowski » Mon Dec 05, 2011 2:18 pm

Anonymous User wrote:If I have the option to do an internship as an 0L at the county prosecutor's office that I would ultimately like to end up at, should I leave my current job for the opportunity? Here is my thinking and situation -

-1yr out of undergrad, starting school next fall, currently have a low-paying state job that is relevant in some obscure ways to criminal law, but the office I work at is not anywhere near the county I want to work at.

-County contains a larger metropolitan city, but is not one that is (to my knowledge) crazy competitive like chicago/ny.

-The law school I will be attending next fall is in the county I want to work in and has the best reputation of any other school in that area, so getting a 1L/2L internship there is definitely do-able. However, I don't want to take any chances, and feel like doing an internship/volunteer work as an 0L will give me that much more of a chance (resume/demonstrated interest in that office/networking)

With all of that in mind, would doing an internship as an 0L, provided I can get one at this office, be worth it? Or is it easier than I think (with preparation and the proper credentials, of course) to get an internship in the office you want for your 1L/2L summer?



It's not going to be a game-changer. I did an internship with a prosecutor before law school and it was not much of a factor in subsequent legal work. You're probably won't be doing actual substantive legal work--it will mostly be office work, filing, and observing court proceedings.

On the other hand, you could move there early and do an internship over the summer before law school. It certainly won't hurt.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273601
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 05, 2011 3:23 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Miami Dade just sent me a snail mail offer to interview. I will have to cover travel expenses which stinks but isn't totally unexpected.


I also received an offer to interview at Miami. Did you respond by email or phone? I've emailed and it's been about a week and still no response. I guess I will have to call to schedule the interview.


Same boat. Left voicemail, realized that he is probably swamped so sent email. Almost 2 weeks now without a reply....


Anyone that received an offer to interview at Miami heard back? Voicemails and Emails have gotten no response. I will try again but lack of communication may make my travel arrangements much more difficult.



I got a hold of the guy and gave him a range of dates. That was about 3 weeks ago, with no word back yet..... Getting a little worried.

duster
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri May 20, 2011 12:46 am

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby duster » Mon Dec 12, 2011 1:57 pm

What happens if you put all your eggs in one basket for Prosecution/PD, interning in gov over the summer to show interest etc, and they don't hire you? Where can you scramble to?

User avatar
FlanAl
Posts: 1474
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2010 4:53 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby FlanAl » Mon Dec 12, 2011 2:19 pm

have the same question. but I also wanted to ask about PD offices that do the unpaid clerk thing. Are chances of getting hired after doing a stint of unpaid work pretty likely? How hard is it to get one of the unpaid positions? and how do you pay your loans during this time (does this count towards your IBR time even if you aren't getting paid?)
thanks

Anonymous User
Posts: 273601
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 12, 2011 2:58 pm

duster wrote:What happens if you put all your eggs in one basket for Prosecution/PD, interning in gov over the summer to show interest etc, and they don't hire you? Where can you scramble to?


Well it gives you a leg up for applying to other offices in the same vein, as opposed to people with no demonstrated interest. Depending on where you are you might get some trial experience, which you then parlay into litigation experience for firm interviews. It also allows you to have a demonstrated interest to public service for other government agencies, than the average private sector person (for the non DOJ Honors places)

Note, I'm still testing this theory out myself, but I can say that my trial experience netted me one V50 callback, that I'm still waiting on.

User avatar
Tanicius
Posts: 2957
Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2009 12:54 am

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Tanicius » Mon Dec 12, 2011 7:05 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
duster wrote:What happens if you put all your eggs in one basket for Prosecution/PD, interning in gov over the summer to show interest etc, and they don't hire you? Where can you scramble to?


Well it gives you a leg up for applying to other offices in the same vein, as opposed to people with no demonstrated interest. Depending on where you are you might get some trial experience, which you then parlay into litigation experience for firm interviews. It also allows you to have a demonstrated interest to public service for other government agencies, than the average private sector person (for the non DOJ Honors places)

Note, I'm still testing this theory out myself, but I can say that my trial experience netted me one V50 callback, that I'm still waiting on.


Very nice. What were your grades/class rank like though? Either way, the problem I'm chewing my nails off over is the possibility of going all gung-ho for a PD job, and then during OCI not getting any offers because I've demonstrated too much suspicious interest in public service. I feel like I'm between a rock and a hard place here, because I really want a PD job, but I don't want to be scrambling from county to county several years out of graduation applying for grants for unpaid temp positions just on the off-chance that I might land a tenure position. That's a very scary proposition, and if at all possible, I think we all want to keep other doors open in case things just don't get any better in the near future.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273601
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Dec 12, 2011 8:38 pm

Tanicius wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
duster wrote:What happens if you put all your eggs in one basket for Prosecution/PD, interning in gov over the summer to show interest etc, and they don't hire you? Where can you scramble to?


Well it gives you a leg up for applying to other offices in the same vein, as opposed to people with no demonstrated interest. Depending on where you are you might get some trial experience, which you then parlay into litigation experience for firm interviews. It also allows you to have a demonstrated interest to public service for other government agencies, than the average private sector person (for the non DOJ Honors places)

Note, I'm still testing this theory out myself, but I can say that my trial experience netted me one V50 callback, that I'm still waiting on.


Very nice. What were your grades/class rank like though? Either way, the problem I'm chewing my nails off over is the possibility of going all gung-ho for a PD job, and then during OCI not getting any offers because I've demonstrated too much suspicious interest in public service. I feel like I'm between a rock and a hard place here, because I really want a PD job, but I don't want to be scrambling from county to county several years out of graduation applying for grants for unpaid temp positions just on the off-chance that I might land a tenure position. That's a very scary proposition, and if at all possible, I think we all want to keep other doors open in case things just don't get any better in the near future.


I'm a little bit of an odd case, I'm a URM at HYS. So a lot of my success may come from being an extreme novelty. I'm not sure what school you're at or what year you are, but my advice would be do a PD's office 1L summer and then try and get a clinical 2L or 3L (preferably 3L) year, so you can demonstrate interest and dedication. Keep your 2L summer open for firm work. I've got a friend and their resume was stacked with public interest crap who managed to tie down 2 offers at OCI at a different school.

User avatar
FlanAl
Posts: 1474
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2010 4:53 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby FlanAl » Wed Dec 14, 2011 10:37 pm

anyone have any thoughts on jag to pd? seems like a lot of pd offices want experience before they hire you. also seems like jag typically more for people who go the da route but I'd assume you get a fair amount of defense experience in jag.

User avatar
FlanAl
Posts: 1474
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2010 4:53 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby FlanAl » Wed Dec 14, 2011 10:37 pm

anyone have any thoughts on jag to pd? seems like a lot of pd offices want experience before they hire you. also seems like jag typically more for people who go the da route but I'd assume you get a fair amount of defense experience in jag.

User avatar
NoleinNY
Posts: 1031
Joined: Mon Sep 14, 2009 4:58 pm

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby NoleinNY » Wed Dec 14, 2011 10:54 pm

FlanAl wrote:anyone have any thoughts on jag to pd? seems like a lot of pd offices want experience before they hire you. also seems like jag typically more for people who go the da route but I'd assume you get a fair amount of defense experience in jag.


Couldn't hurt. It's good experience, and military service is generally well respected. Even if you did mostly prosecution stuff, you could just tell the PD that you, as my professor said, "Saw the light."

User avatar
Tanicius
Posts: 2957
Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2009 12:54 am

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby Tanicius » Wed Dec 14, 2011 11:01 pm

NoleinNY wrote:
FlanAl wrote:anyone have any thoughts on jag to pd? seems like a lot of pd offices want experience before they hire you. also seems like jag typically more for people who go the da route but I'd assume you get a fair amount of defense experience in jag.


Couldn't hurt. It's good experience, and military service is generally well respected. Even if you did mostly prosecution stuff, you could just tell the PD that you, as my professor said, "Saw the light."


Trust me, you would have no problem doing PD work with JAG. Military bases + liquor stores = plenty of defendants.

duster
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri May 20, 2011 12:46 am

Re: How to be a Prosecution/PD Gunner?

Postby duster » Fri Dec 16, 2011 2:04 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Tanicius wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
duster wrote:What happens if you put all your eggs in one basket for Prosecution/PD, interning in gov over the summer to show interest etc, and they don't hire you? Where can you scramble to?


Well it gives you a leg up for applying to other offices in the same vein, as opposed to people with no demonstrated interest. Depending on where you are you might get some trial experience, which you then parlay into litigation experience for firm interviews. It also allows you to have a demonstrated interest to public service for other government agencies, than the average private sector person (for the non DOJ Honors places)

Note, I'm still testing this theory out myself, but I can say that my trial experience netted me one V50 callback, that I'm still waiting on.


Very nice. What were your grades/class rank like though? Either way, the problem I'm chewing my nails off over is the possibility of going all gung-ho for a PD job, and then during OCI not getting any offers because I've demonstrated too much suspicious interest in public service. I feel like I'm between a rock and a hard place here, because I really want a PD job, but I don't want to be scrambling from county to county several years out of graduation applying for grants for unpaid temp positions just on the off-chance that I might land a tenure position. That's a very scary proposition, and if at all possible, I think we all want to keep other doors open in case things just don't get any better in the near future.


I'm a little bit of an odd case, I'm a URM at HYS. So a lot of my success may come from being an extreme novelty. I'm not sure what school you're at or what year you are, but my advice would be do a PD's office 1L summer and then try and get a clinical 2L or 3L (preferably 3L) year, so you can demonstrate interest and dedication. Keep your 2L summer open for firm work. I've got a friend and their resume was stacked with public interest crap who managed to tie down 2 offers at OCI at a different school.


So if I understand you correctly, you worked in gov 1l and 2l summers and now are looking at firm offers? Do you know anything about, say, working gov 1l, firm 2l, and trying for DA/PD after that?




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.