An Integrated Approach to Defense Investigation
We are experienced fact investigators, licensed in Vermont and New York, who are available to investigate your case from beginning to end. We will meet with you and/or your client as early as possible and explore alternate theories of the case and examine the evidence and discovery with an eye toward successful pre-trial motions. We have testified in both federal and state court, and are as comfortable on the witness stand as we are in the field.
From the beginning, we are making observations about your client's physical and mental health because we realize there may come a time when you have to present your client as a whole complicated person to a sentencing judge. Our clients are much more than the worst thing he or she has ever done. We have an integrated approach to defense investigation. We are fact investigators who are concurrently exploring the mitigating factors that make your client's story unique, factors that change the narrative in court and make a difference at sentencing.
The prosecution can tell you what happened on the day or night in question. The more interesting story for VTPrivateye is always why did this happen. We are storytellers. It's actually what we do best. If you are a criminal defense attorney, we will sit down with your client and piece together their life story. We will ask them to write their own story, detailing the most important milestones of their lives. Who really cared about them? Who were their parents, their foster parents, guidance counselors, basketball coaches? What was their childhood like? Are there mental health or substance abuse issues? Was there food and warmth in their house? It takes curiosity and patience to take a client's life apart to figure out why they have ended up at this exact spot in their lives.
We also do an extensive paper investigation. We will get every piece of institutional record that will help tell your client's story. Birth records, hospital and rehabilitation records, school and employment records can all become powerful exhibits at sentencing, and can help change how your client is viewed by the court. Was your client a victim of the 'School to Prison Pipeline?' We will get ahold of their school records to see what happened.
When a client has a compelling story that we can show better than tell, we will produce 10 - 15 minute sentencing videos to tell a client's life story. Susan Randall's experience as a NYC documentary filmmaker makes her highly qualified to produce mitigation videos for your client. Susan has been recognized nationally for her groundbreaking work using this medium. VTPrivateye's sentencing mitigation videos have been shown in courts around Vermont, New England, and across the country, and have had a huge impact at sentencing and during plea negotiations.
The prosecution will undoubtedly go to great lengths and into great detail describing the very worst moment of your client's life. We will put that moment into context.