Chattanooga Federal & State Criminal Defense Lawyer
Bret moved to the Hamilton County District Attorney's Office in early 2005 where he served the community as the federally funded Governor's Highway Safety Office DUI Prosecutor from January 2005 to October 2007. During his tenure as the County's DUI Prosecutor, Bret handled hundreds of DUI cases, numerous vehicular assault and vehicular homicide matters and tried more DUI cases to a Criminal Court jury than any other attorney.
Due to his courtroom experience, Bret was hired in November 2007 to serve the United States as a federal prosecutor handling crimes – drug importation and immigration cases – arising along the international border between Arizona and Mexico. Bret represented the United States in hundreds of immigration cases and numerous drug importation actions. Many of Bret’s drug matters involved drug quantities in excess of 10 kilograms of cocaine or methamphetamine (or more than 800 pounds of Marijuana). Bret handled sentencing hearings for the Yuma office before eleven federal district judges at The Sandra Day O’Connor Federal Courthouse in Phoenix, Arizona.
Bret and his family returned home to Chattanooga in 2010 where Bret handled felony cases in Hamilton County Criminal Court before being promoted to a position as the County’s Gang Prosecutor. As the Gang Prosecutor, Bret represented the State in several violent felony trials and further served as a liaison between the District Attorney’s Office and other government agencies, including the Mayor’s Office and federal authorities.
During a criminal jury trial, Bret was noticed by General Counsel for Life Care Centers of America, Inc., a national skilled nursing and assisted living company with facilities in twenty-eight states. He was hired as a supervisor in Life Care’s legal department, overseeing regulatory issues, contract matters as well as professional and general liability matters. Bret attended mediations and arbitrations on behalf of the company, and he analyzed case strategies presented to the company by the myriad of outside law firms hired to represent Life Care nationwide.
Bret recently returned to Chattanooga to work with long-time friend (and previous legal adversary) Johnny Houston. As with Bret, Johnny’s practice focuses on Criminal Defense, DUI representation, and Personal Injury matters.
Bret and his family live in the Chattanooga area where Bret enjoys mountain biking with friends and kayaking with his family.
How do I choose a lawyer?
Consider the following:
- Comfort Level
- - Are you comfortable telling the lawyer personal information? Does the lawyer seem interested in solving your problem?
- - How long has the lawyer been in practice? Has the lawyer worked on other cases similar to yours?
- - How are the lawyer's fees structured - hourly or flat fee? Can the lawyer estimate the cost of your case?
- - Is the lawyer's office conveniently located?
Not sure what questions to ask a lawyer?
Here are a few to get you started:
- How long have you been in practice?
- How many cases like mine have you handled?
- How often do you settle cases out of court?
- What are your fees and costs?
- What are the next steps?
Want to check lawyer discipline?
It is always a good idea to research your lawyer prior to hiring. Every state has a disciplinary organization that monitors attorneys, their licenses, and consumer complaints. By researching lawyer discipline you can:
- Ensure the attorney is currently licensed to practice in your state
- Gain an understanding of his or her historical disciplinary record, if any.
- Determine the seriousness of complaints/issues which could range from late bar fees to more serious issues requiring disciplinary action.