Contributors

Melissa L. Shearer

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Melissa L. Shearer has been an attorney with the Travis County Mental Health Public Defender (MHPD) since its inception in 2007. Prior to her work with the MHPD, Melissa served as an attorney with the Legal Services Division of the State Bar of Texas and the Colorado State Public Defender in Denver. Melissa received her bachelor’s degree in Social Work with honors from the University of Texas at Austin in 1997 and her JD from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2002.

Michael C. Gross

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Michael C. Gross is a partner at Gross & Esparza, PLLC, in San Antonio, Texas, and was licensed in Texas in 1987. He is board certified in Criminal Law and Criminal Appeallate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and is board certified in Criminal Trial Advocacy by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. The firm’s practice is devoted to state, federal, and military criminal law.

Michael McCrum

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Michael McCrum is a self-employed criminal defense attorney in San Antonio with over 27 years’ experience. He previously worked for 10+ years as a federal prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Western District of Texas as Chief of the Major Crimes Section and Chief of the Drug and Money Laundering Section. Michael currently serves on the board of directors of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association and the San Antonio Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, as well as on the Criminal Law Committee of the San Antonio Bar Association.

Michael Mowla

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Michael Mowla received a BS from University of North Texas and a JD from Syracuse University College of Law. He is licensed in Texas, New York, Connecticut, all the federal courts in Texas, the United States Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit, the United States Supreme Court, and the United States Tax Court. He is Board Certified in Criminal Appellate Law and in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He is rated AV Preeminent by the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating, and has been a Super Lawyers Texas Rising Star for 2010–2013.

Michael Mowla

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Michael Mowla offices in Dallas. He is Board Certified in Criminal Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He is rated AV® Preeminent™ by the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings. He represents clients at trial, on appeal, and on habeas corpus in state and federal court. His cases range from DWI to the death penalty. He can be reached at michael@mowlalaw.com or 972-795-2401.

Michael Spence

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Michael Spence, PhD, is a molecular biologist and specialist in forensic biology, DNA analysis, consultation, and trial planning. He is the founder of Spence Forensic Resources in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Dr. Spence was the trial consultant and expert witness for the defense in this case.

Mick Mickelsen

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Mick Mickelsen is a partner in the Dallas-based criminal defense firm Broden, Mickelsen, Helms & Snipes, LLP. Mickelsen has defended clients for the last 20 years charged with state crimes in Texas and represented individuals accused of white-collar charges, drug trafficking, sexual assault, the death penalty, and more. Mickelsen is certified by the Texas State Bar of Legal Specialization in criminal law and criminal appellate law.

Mike Ware

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Mike Ware lives in Fort Worth, Texas. He graduated from the University of Houston Law School in 1983, where he was research editor for the Houston Law Review. In 2006, he co-founded the Innocence Project of Texas. In July 2007 Mike left private practice to become the head of the newly formed Conviction Integrity Unit (CIU) in the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office, where he made national and international news for securing exonerations for 15 wrongly convicted innocent men, some of whom had served more than 25 years in prison.

Mimi Coffey

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Mimi Coffey is a trial attorney with 17 years’ experience. Founder of The Coffey Firm, she practices in Dallas, Tarrant, and Collin counties. She is board-certified in DWI by the National College of DUI Defense (NCDD) and is a Regent of the NCDD. Author of Texas DWI Defense: The Law and Practice, Mimi has also written three nationally published and four statewide articles. Mimi has twice attended Indiana University’s Borkenstein Course for state toxicologists, on both alcohol and drugs.

Monique Sparks

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Monique Sparks received her bachelor's degree in Political Science from Dillard University in 2003. She received her JD in 2006 from the Texas Southern University Thurgood Marshall School of Law and became licensed in the same year. She opened her firm, the Sparks Law Firm, PC, in 2008 in Houston, Texas. Monique handles both family and criminal matters in Houston and surrounding counties. She is a member of the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association (HCCLA) and a graduate of the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College.