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Robert M. Sanger - Santa Barbara, CA

222 East Carrillo StreetSuite 300 Santa Barbara, CA 93101

Super Lawyers®


Virtual Appointments

Updated: 08/01/2023

Santa Barbara Criminal Defense Lawyer

About Robert M. Sanger

Practice Areas

  • Criminal Defense
  • State and Federal
  • Business and Securities Offenses
  • Complex Civil Litigation
  • Homicide


  • 100%

Current Employment Position(s)

  • Senior Partner


Bar Admissions

  • California, 1973
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit, 1981
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of California
  • U.S. District Court Central District of California
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of California
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of California
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1979
  • U.S. Tax Court, 1975
  • U.S. District Court District of Arizona
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court Western District of Oklahoma
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Illinois
  • District of Columbia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 7th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 10th Circuit

Specialties and Certifications

  • Criminal Law, California Board of Legal Specialization, 1982

Other Affiliations

  • California Attorneys for Criminal Justice, 1976 - Present (President)
  • California Public Defenders Association, 1977 - Present (Member)
  • Santa Barbara County Bar, 1977 - Present (Chair/Member, Criminal Law Section)
  • American Civil Liberties Union, Santa Barbara (President, 1987 - 1989, 1991 - 1993)
  • Santa Barbara County Bar Association, 1977 - 1979 (Member, Board of Directors)
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (Member)
  • Santa Barbara Criminal Defense Bar Association (Co-Chair, 1993-1994)
  • Criminal Courts Association (Member)
  • Federal Bar Association (Member)
  • Board of Governors, 2006 - Present (Member)
  • American Bar Association (Member)
  • California Attorneys for Criminal Justice (CACJ) (Member)
  • Santa Barbara Women Lawyers (Member)
  • California Attorneys for Criminal Justice (CACJ) (Board of Governors, 2006 - 2014)
  • Death Penalty Focus (Director, 1998 - Present)
  • Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference between 2004 and 2007 (Delegate)
  • Firearms and Toolmarks Academy Standards Board (Chair)


  • University of California at Los Angeles School of Law, Los Angeles, California, 1973
    Juris Doctorate
  • University of California, Santa Barbara, California, 1970

Classes and Seminars

  • Adjunct Professor of Law, Civil Practice, Santa Barbara College of Law, 1975 - 1976
  • Homicide Seminar, Public Defenders Association, Napa, California
  • Death Penalty Seminar, California Attorneys for Criminal Justice, Berkeley, California
  • Grand Jury Practice Seminar, Santa Barbara Criminal Defense Bar Association, 1994 - 1994
  • Capital Case Defense Seminar (CCDS), Co-Chair


Other Sources of Feedback About Robert M. Sanger

Included on the 2024 Southern California list

Past Lists

  • 2023 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2022 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2021 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2020 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2019 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2018 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2017 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2016 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2015 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2014 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2013 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2012 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2011 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2010 Southern California Super Lawyers list
  • 2009 Southern California Super Lawyers list

View the profile for Robert M. Sanger on Super Lawyers


  • Bill of Rights Award, ACLU, Santa Barbara Chapter, 1994
  • Santa Barbara Criminal Defense Bar Association Order of the Reasonable Doubt, 1993
  • Selected to Super Lawyers, by Super Lawyers Magazine
  • Fellow, American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS)
  • California State Bar Board of Governor's Award for Pro Bono Services, 1982
  • Death Penalty Focus Special Achievement Award, 2004
  • Listed in Naifeth and Smith
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America
  • AV® Preeminent™ Rating, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Listed in Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers


Office Information


222 East Carrillo StreetSuite 300 Santa Barbara, CA 93101


  • 805-963-7311

Accepts Credit Cards


Office Hours

8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. weekdays and on holidays and weekends by appointment



  • Chinese Encounters American Bar Association Journal, April, 1981
  • Confessions of a Criminal Lawyer American Bar Association Journal, October, 1982
  • The Execution Protocol, Federal Bar News and Journal, June, 1993
  • Dead Man Walking Federal Bar and News Journal, June, 1994
  • Defending the Devil Federal Bar and News Journal, September, 1994
  • Three Strikes, Santa Barbara County Bar Association, 1994
  • And Then There Were Seven, (The OJ Simpson Trial) Legal Times, March 27, 1995
  • The Truth School's Curriculum, (The OJ Simpson Trial) Legal Times, April 3, 1995
  • Will Loose Lips Sink Simpson Jury?, (The OJ Simpson Trial) Legal Times, April 10, 1995
  • The Best Justice Money Can Buy, (The OJ Simpson Trial) Legal Times, April 17, 1995
  • Among the Lowest of the Dead: The Culture of Death Row, Federal Lawyer, July, 1995
  • Jury Reform: Is It About Time? The American Lawyer, September 1995
  • Making Sense of the OJ Verdict, The American Lawyer, November 1995
  • Race for Justice: Mumia Abu-Jamal's Fight Against the Death Penalty/ Live From Death Row,by Mumia Abu-Jamal, Federal Lawyer, May 1996
  • Basic Concepts of Legal Thought, Federal Lawyers, September, 1996
  • Comparison of the Illinois Commission Report on Capital Punishment Recommendations with the Capital Punishment System in California in Volume 44 of the University of Santa Clara Law Review, September 2003
  • Monthly column for the Santa Barbara Lawyer Magazine entitled Criminal Justice, Author, 2006 - Present
  • Respondeat Superior in Criminal Cases, 04/2013
  • Science and the Law – A New Rule for Admissibility, 04/2012
  • Mental Retardation and Being Put to Death by the State, Part 1, 08/2011
  • Money Laundering and Financial Crimes in Santa Barbara, 01/2011
  • “Duties of Capital Trial Counsel Under the California 'Death Penalty Reform and Savings Act of 2016” in Volume 53, Number 3 of Criminal Law Bulletin

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222 East Carrillo StreetSuite 300 Santa Barbara, CA 93101

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