Friday, October 16, 2009

Prosecutor v. Defense Lawyer: Who Wears the "White Hat?"

As you can plainly see the picture above, this is a white hat. My question for you today is: In a criminal case, who really wears the white hat in court? Is it the crusading prosecutor who, while standing up for his or her crime victim, is fighting to protect society and for "truth, justice, and the American way?" Or is it the criminal defense lawyer who, while defending the accused, is fighting, as the under dog, to make the government do its job properly and ensuring that his client gets their "fair day in court?"

The point of this post is that, in my opinion, BOTH advocates should get to wear the white hat to court! In other words, in order for our criminal justice system to work properly, it requires good, experienced advocates seeking justice on BOTH sides of the courtroom. And even though I was a federal prosecutor for over 20 years, and a defense attorney for only less than 5 years, I am convinced that defense attorneys have just as an important role to play as the government lawyers.

So, please pardon me as I grab my white hat and head to court!


  1. Richard, that is the way it should be, you are suppose to be innocent until proven guilty, and if there is over whelming evidence pointing to the crime there is a duty to convict.
    both lawyers indeed deserve the white hat,as they both have an important client.

  2. Thanks, Bob! And, as a fine American, you should get to wear a white hat, too!