Attorney James M. “Matt” Stiller, Jr. will attend a weeklong seminar hosted by Gerry Spence’s Trial Lawyers College beginning June 9. The focus of the seminar is defending the accused in death penalty capital murder cases. It will be held at the Thunderhead Ranch in Dubois, Wyoming.
Representation of an individual charged with a capital crime is the highest calling for a lawyer. The cost of representation reaches deep into our souls. At this seminar, the attorneys learn to walk in the shoes of the clients and to understand the impact of the crime on all the people touched by the tragedy. Attorneys learn to bring together teams to discover the story of the client; work on direct examination of the family of the accused and the experts presented in the mitigation stage; look at jury selection and how to seat a jury that can hear the evidence that justifies a life. This continuing law education program will focus on and address techniques the trial lawyer can use to successfully and adequately represent and understand a defendant facing the death penalty and to defeat death.
Gerry Spence is recognized nationwide for his powerful courtroom victories. He graduated cum laude from the University of Wyoming Law School in 1952, and has spent his lifetime representing the poor, the injured, the forgotten and the damned against what he calls “the new slave master,” a combination of mammoth corporations and gargantuan government. He has tried and won many nationally known cases, including the Karen Silkwood case, (a movie was made of the case with Meryl Streep and Cher,) the defense of Randy Weaver at Ruby Ridge, the defense of Imelda Marcos, the case against “Penthouse Magazine” for Miss Wyoming and the murder defenses of Ed Cantrell and Sandy Jones. Spence has tried numerous other important criminal and civil trials. He has never lost a criminal case either as a prosecutor or a defense attorney. He has not lost a civil case since 1969. He has had more multi-million dollar verdicts without an intervening loss than any lawyer in America. Spence is the founder of the nationally acclaimed Trial Lawyers College which established a revolutionary method for training lawyers for the people.
According to the Trial Lawyers College website, the College is dedicated to training and educating lawyers and judges who are committed to the jury system and to representing and obtaining justice for individuals: the poor, the injured, the forgotten, the voiceless, the defenseless and the damned, and to protecting the rights of such people from corporate and government oppression. In all of its activities, the Trial Lawyers College will foster and nourish an open atmosphere of caring for people regardless of their race, age, creed, religion, national origin, physical abilities, gender or sexual orientation. The College does not offer training for those lawyers who represent government, corporations or large business interests.
Needless to say, we are very proud of Matt’s dedication to his art and craft.