In cases where a defendant seems unjustly accused, the defense attorney is our hero. But if they seem guilty…or if it’s an especially violent crime, we look at these lawyers and wonder…how can they do that?
This is a show about the people who stand with the accused.
You’ll hear five perspectives on the art of criminal defense, and you’ll hear some great stories. Which makes sense because telling great stories is part of the job description.
Hear the Full Interviews
Here are the (relatively) unedited interviews with the attorneys. I’ve removed redundancies, overly personal material, and questions of my own that were too wandering and obtuse. Sadly, the interview with Scott Williams was too damaged to include. I salvaged small sections for the show, but most of the interview suffered from ‘faulty microphone.’
Kerry DeWolfe Part 1:
Kerry DeWolfe Part 2:
Richard Rubin Part 1:
Richard Rubin Part 2:
Richard Rubin Esq., Rubin, Kidney, Meyer & Vincent
Kerry B. DeWolfe, Esq., Appellate Division, Office of the Defender General
Dan Sedon, Esq., Sedon and Ericson, P.C., Chelsea, Vermont
Kelly Green, Esq., Staff Attorney, Prisoner’s Rights Office, Office of the Defender General
Scott R. Williams, Esq., Williams Law Group, LLC
This show was mixed by the wonderful Colin McCaffrey. The featured photo is another great contribution by Josh Larkin. Thanks too to David Schulman for his music!
And thanks to Colin Dickerman, G, RSH, Larry Massett and especially Tamar Cole for all the help and feedback.
Possibly Related Episodes
|Music Soundbeds||David Schulman and Quiet Life Motel|
Just got time to listen to your show. It was great. I listened to the whole thing in one sitting. Almost made me wish I’d become a lawyer. i think the closing statement chapter cured me of that temporary insanity.
Fascinating show. I grew up in a legal household, so much of this felt familiar to me. You got it right. It’s a complex, messy business. Given the crooked timber we are made of, it’s a wonder it works at all.
I enjoyed getting to know these people. I certainly would want them on my side in a pinch.
This is a stellar podcast and profile of defense attorneys in VT, the trials, the system, the integrity of the lawyers and the fascinating interplay of the justice system. On par with This American Life. Spellbinding.
Got to listen to this with one of the lawyers you interviewed. You did such a great job weaving their stories together and finding commonalities and contrasts. Thanks for doing this.
Five totally different personalities who consider their career as defense attorneys a “calling”. Good for them and good for us. Loved the stories, especially the Woodstock woman with 99 dogs and cats AND the fellow who just had to get his deer (what a riot, first things first).
A beautiful and complex depiction of those dare “do it”. Congratulations, Erica. Looking forward to revisiting it and have sent it on to a good lawyer friend of yours and mine in Vancouver, Wa.
Wow! That is an amazing program. Thank-you! I have a friend who is a public defender in Bennington and this really opens my eyes and heart to what he must go through. Really candid, important stuff here.
what profound theater! and useful information.
i would have liked to “know who the players are”, as one of the lawyers says, because their personalities are the parallel story.
Once again such a great piece! I am a strong supporter of the Bill of Rights and very grateful to the men and women who serve as Defense Attorneys and allow all regardless of income or status the right to a trial by jury with legal representation.
Thank you Erica.
Great new piece.
As a long time skeptic of the legal profession, this was especially valuable for me.
The attorneys were well spoken, direct and even likable. Who would have thought?
By the end I was left with entirely different feelings about the defense bar.
We all knew – or should have known – that the accused deserve counsel as a constitutional right. I had always thought however, that the men and women involved in this line of legal work were either fresh out of law school and “practicing” their newly learned skills on the downtrodden as a way station to a “real” legal job or greedy, private bottom feeders defending only affluent socialites who have killed their spouses.
I was so taken by the early remarks, that I insisted that the family listen with me on a Saturday night during the World Cup game between Britain and Italy. It says quite a lot that eight of us were impressed enough to enter into a prolonged and thoughtful discussion after the hour long show on such a night.
Loud cheers to ms Heilman and the attorneys for a providing us with thoughtful and thought provoking hour!
This piece once again showcases Rumble Strip Vermont’s ability to convey stories that interest and move people regardless of their connection or lack thereof to the topic and/or Vermont. An ability to see/hear what is here around us for what it is and for how it relates to universals–good/evil, story, passion, individual/society. And these pieces always flow and sound amazing. Thanks to the five attorneys for being so open and thanks as always to Erica for her skill and judgment.
Really wonderful information I am fascinated with trials and mysteries. This was real life. Just as interesting as the made up stories. The trials are not just the story and the defendant. Each council has their own story, background and view. Great show
Kerry, Just finished listening to your interview. Thank you for you work and your efforts on the part of the people you defended. As I have grown older I have clearly seen the punitive nature of the state and the sad cycle of repeat offenses it creates. I had a janitor working for me in Chittenden County( a very nice man who could have made a good life) who violated his parole because of the very issues you discusses.
Erica Thanks as always
Took the long way home so I could finish. And called my lawyer buddy on the Cape midway through to tell him about it. The guy who went hunting on the lunch break then got sent home to gut his deer after being convicted is my hero. Well not hero, but yeah, my hero of Chelsea.
At last! Some reality about Vermont, rather than the solipsistic, narcissistic, privileged prattle one usually hears on VPR “commentaries.” Keep up the well-done work. Thank you.
These extended interviews are incredible. So many insights into how things work in this state. Thank you for your generosity in posting them — and thanks to the lawyers for being so open in talking about their work! Hugely revealing and moving, as well as entertaining.