The day law enforcement picked me up for questioning, I returned to campus to learn that I was indefinitely suspended without pay. In a panic, I left voice messages with three attorneys whom I selected from an internet search. Jim called me back promptly and scheduled a meeting for early the next morning. I retained Jim as my legal counsel because, when he heard my unusual story, he asked smart, thoughtful questions. He had no background in disability rights, but he immediately understood that the issue in my case was the intelligence of the man I loved.
A six-year odyssey followed, through which Jim and Sandy stood staunchly by my side. More than a year passed before a grand jury indicted me. During that time, Jim and Sandy helped me obtain my divorce. After the indictment, it was another two-and-a-half years before my case came to trial. They succeeded in having a world-renowned expert in communication for people with cerebral palsy examine my friend, tracked down witnesses, and secured substantial evidence that my friend is intelligent and capable of consenting to sexual activity.
Then came the blows. In the months leading up to the trial, the judge made a series of rulings blocking all our evidence. Jim remained calm and confident, helping me to feel the same. He did not mislead me about how tough the judge was making it for me to get a fair hearing, but he knew I was going to have to be optimistic when I took the stand. Meanwhile, he was carefully laying the groundwork for an appeal should that prove necessary.
It did. I was convicted and sentenced to 12 years of incarceration. Jim—often joined by Sandy—traveled to the prison numerous times to consult with me as he worked on my appeal. My friends and family who attended the oral arguments before the Appellate Court said that Jim was brilliant. The three judges unanimously overturned the conviction, and I was released from prison after having served 21 months.
Jim practices as a criminal defense attorney because he believes with heartfelt conviction that people who have committed crimes deserve fair treatment by the justice system and, therefore, the best possible legal representation. He believed in my innocence, which means a lot to me, but I know that he treated me no differently than any other client. Regardless of our guilt, Jim listens carefully to all his clients, works hard and well on our behalf, charges reasonably for his services, and treats us in every way with respect and consideration. It made all the difference that I chose Jim as my attorney. Were it not for him, I would most likely still be incarcerated. Instead, I am reunited with my family and friends and, step by step, I am building a future for myself. Jim saved my life. He and Sandy will always have my deepest gratitude and respect.