Friday, 26. April 2013
Stacy Kaye has been with Appelman Law Firm for over five years. She served as a Law Clerk for three years before joining the team as an associate in October 2010. Stacy specializes in a variety of criminal defense areas, including DUI, drug, juvenile, theft and violent crimes. In her Q&A, Stacy talks about the challenges of working as a defense attorney, and she shares some of her favorite interests. For more information about Stacy, or to talk to her about your case, give her a call at (952) 224-2277.
1) What first got you interested in law, and more specifically criminal defense?
I was a history/political science major as an undergraduate at Macalester College. My specific academic focus was how governments and laws have been designed, modified, and interpreted in order to achieve political/philosophical/moral aims throughout American history. I figured the only realistic career option was to become a history professor, but my history professors told me to consider criminal defense instead. They said it was because then I’d have a chance to try and address injustice as it was happening, which I think was a nice way of saying they thought I liked to argue too much to be anything other than an attorney. In any event, I’m very glad I took their advice and switched courses career-wise.
2) Tell us about the strangest/most impressive/weirdest case you’ve ever worked?
It’s a case that’s unfolding right now, actually, so I probably shouldn’t say much else, other than the cops violated their own procedures, as well as my client’s rights, in dozens of ways. In most cases, I’m happy to have a few issues to litigate, but this case implicates virtually every issue a defense attorney can challenge. It’ll be exciting to see how it unfolds.
3) What is the biggest day-to-day challenge as a criminal defense attorney?
I love how exciting and fast-paced our day-to-day case load is, but it can be tough at times to juggle those responsibilities with the unexpected emergencies that always seem pop up just when we least expect them. But that’s what makes the job continually stimulating and interesting, and it’s very rewarding to be able to help people navigate what can often be a very stressful and overwhelming system.
4) You served as a Law Clerk for Appelman Law Firm for three years before joining the team as an associate. How helpful was it to get that experience as a law clerk before becoming an attorney?
It was invaluable. Considering that clients are placing a tremendous amount of trust in you to protect their rights and freedom, being a young criminal defense attorney is intimidating enough without having to simultaneously learn the practical ins and outs of the system from scratch. The reality of the criminal justice system bears little if any resemblance to anything they teach in law school, so I’m very glad to have had the opportunity to gain practical experience in every aspect of our practice prior to becoming a licensed attorney.
5) Tell us a little about your background. You went to college and law school in the Twin Cities….have you been in Minnesota your whole life?
No, but I have officially lived here for half my life as of this year. My family is from the northeast, although my mom’s side has Minnesota roots. I was born and raised just outside Philadelphia, where I lived until I started high school at the Taft School in Connecticut. After my mom moved to the Twin Cities, I transferred to St. Paul Academy in St. Paul, MN, and stayed in the area for college at Macalester and law school at the University of Minnesota. Minnesota has turned out to be quite a nice place to live, so I have no plans on leaving anytime soon.
6) What do you find most rewarding as a criminal defense attorney?
I love a lot of things about the job, but just to name a few: helping people through stressful and difficult situations, the mental stimulation involved in devising creative legal strategies, keeping the police honest, the exciting nature of our cases.
1) Favorite Food: Fried chicken
2) Favorite Books: The Plague; The Stranger; The Road to Wigin Pier; The 42nd Parallel; Crime and Punishment; The English Patient; No Exit; A Secret History; In Cold Blood
3) Favorite Movies: Chinatown; Double Indemnity, The Spanish Prisoner; V for Vendetta
4) Favorite TV Shows: Curb Your Enthusiasm; Bored to Death; Veronica Mars; Law and Order; Game of Thrones; Wilfred; Sherlock; Arrested Development
5) Favorite Teams: Phillies; Eagles
6) Favorite Hobby: Reading
7) Favorite Vacation: Anything involving boats, water, and/or Canada
8) Favorite Quote: “Distrust in all in whom the impulse to punish is powerful.” –Nietzsche
9) One Person From History You’d Like to Meet: Ben Franklin
10) Favorite Criminal Charge to Defend: Controlled substance charges