My goal is to provide the absolute best representation possible.

If there is a witness or evidence in Antarctica that will help your case, I will find that witness or evidence.


As I developed my practice, I began hiring attorneys, paralegals and staff to help me. No matter how competent the people that I hired, I found myself dissatisfied with this style of practice. Clients felt more comfortable if they had one attorney handling their case from start to finish. So I made a career choice. While other lawyers and firms were expanding, sometimes becoming nothing more than assembling lines or “mills” delivering a “one-size-fits-all” style of representation, I went in the opposite direction. I decided that I wanted to handle every aspect of every case that I accept myself. I downsized.


I have an extremely competent paralegal/secretary, and work with outstanding investigators and experts, but I am the only attorney in my office. If we form an attorney-client relationship, I will be the attorney that you speak to at the beginning of the case. Together, you and I will develop the defense strategy. I will appear with you at every hearing and personally prepare and argue all of the legal issues in the case. If the case proceeds to trial, I will try it.

The Attorney-Client Relationship and Your Role

Another aspect of my philosophy that I explain to every client at the start of the case is my view of the Attorney-Client Relationship. I believe it is essential that the client actively participate in the preparation of the defense of his or her case. I tell new clients that if I am going to represent them, I want them to make a commitment to spend significant time with me going over the case. As the case proceeds, we receive police reports and other materials from the prosecution. I ask my clients to come in and review those documents in detail in my office. Then, I meet with the client, we review the prosecution’s case, and develop strategies how to best defend against it.


I tell my clients that they can and should call as often as they have concerns. I do not charge for phone calls, and I do not want my clients to have any hesitation in asking me questions about their case. The last thing I want is my client discussing concerns about their case with a friend or neighbor, and have those concerns filter back to the prosecution. I tell each and every client that we are like two people in a row boat in the middle of the ocean in a bad storm. We have to work together.


Delivering outstanding criminal defense services is a demanding task. It is necessary for me to charge accordingly. I will, however, ensure that you will not incur unknown additional expense. I will provide you with written fee agreement, in advance, letting you know exactly what the fees will be in the case. There is never a charge for an initial consultation and fee quote. Typically, I do not charge hourly for my services in defending a criminal cases. Instead, I charge a flat fee, set in advance. For most criminal cases, I charge in parts. I charge one fee for handling every aspect of your case pretrial and a separate fee for the trial itself. I do that so that if a case is resolved without going to trial, the client is not paying for a trial that never happened.

I require the client to pay the pretrial fee and the trial fee at the beginning of the case. I place the trial fee in my trust account, and return it to the client if the case does not actually proceed to trial. I include in my standard retainer agreement a clause that says that if there is any dispute concerning the fee charged, the client may dispute the fee with the arbitration committee of the State Bar of Arizona, and I agree to be bound by its decision. No client has ever done so. There are costs associated with defending a criminal case, and the client is required to pay those costs. Typically, these include the hiring a private investigator, expert witnesses, and charges for documents and transcripts. I require an assurance from my clients that they can pay those costs, which I estimate at the beginning of the case. I have never had a dispute with a client over a fee.

Why you should choose me

I was a Pima County Public Defender from 1977 until 1983 and have been in private practice defending criminal cases since 1983. My practice includes all phases of criminal defense, including homicide, sex offenses, narcotics, DUI and vehicular offenses. I have handled numerous high profile offenses in southern Arizona.


I have over 35 years of experience practicing Criminal Defense. I have defended multiple high profile cases and significantly reduced my clients penalties in the process.


I tell each and every client that we are like two people in a row boat in the middle of the ocean in a bad storm. We have to work together.


  • Listed The Best Lawyers in America since 2000 as well as Southwest Super Lawyers
  • 1994 Trial Lawyer of the Year for the American Trial Lawyers for Public Justice

Free Consultation

There is never a charge for an initial consultation and fee quote. I am proud to say that in over 30 years of private practice, I have never had a dispute with a client over a fee.

My Practice Areas

You face the limitless influence and resources the government can use against you. Contrary to public opinion, appeals and post-conviction relief are usually inadequate to “fix” an injustice. Criminal defense is simply one of those things that must be done right the first time.

My approach to criminal defense is based upon a recognition of one essential fact – NOTHING is more important in your life than defending your criminal case – protecting your reputation, your assets and your freedom. When your freedom is at stake, you simply must have an attorney that will commit totally to your defense. I will vigorously assert and defend your rights. We have an outstanding reputation built on years of experience. I am the only attorney at my law firm, and I am backed by a strong staff and a network of experts. You will never be handed off to an associate or junior attorney at my office; you will have my personal attention from your first consultation all the way through to the resolution of your case. We have handled thousands of state and federal courts.

Get Your Free Consultation

If you would like to discuss your situation with me, please call my office at (520) 882-9904 or fill out the information below. I will get back to you immediately.

Mike in the News