"I Cannot Express My Gratitude Enough"
On August 18, 2012, my journey started with the judicial system. I was charged with six counts of Aggravated Assault with a Firearm. My bond was set at $175,000. I was facing 20 years per count for a total of 120 years. I had no idea what I was in for. After talking with numerous attorneys I knew I was going to prison for my first time. The question was for how long.
Every one of the attorneys recommended to plead out / cutting a deal for a lesser sentence, except one. And that was Sheppard, White, Kachergus, & DeMaggio, P.A. There are many good law firms in Jacksonville, Florida. Not knowing how to choose a law firm was my biggest dilemma. I had to make a choice because of my time line, so I did. I went to trial and lost. The day that I was to be sentenced to 120 years for six counts of aggravated assault with a firearm, I was granted a mistrial. Thank God for good attorneys. The downside of this mistrial meant that I had to do it all over again.
And at that point, I felt that I needed to change attorneys. I didn't need a good attorney, I needed a great attorney. So my wife selected our next attorney. After doing all the necessary research, she came up with Sheppard, White, Kachergus, & DeMaggio, P.A. This is the same law firm that we had spoken with earlier in our decision making process. When my wife showed me what this firm has accomplished in the last 40 years as a law firm, I knew then that I had to put my life in their hands.
Being an Army veteran, I've only had to put my life in someone else's hands one other time in my lifetime. This was one of the hardest things that I've ever had to do. After sitting down with Bill Sheppard and Bryan DeMaggio, my mind was comforted to a degree. I'm not saying that there weren't hurdles and barriers that we had to overcome. The difference is like playing chess. You can know how to counter three to five moves out, or you can know how the game is going to end up. A win. During my quest with this law firm, I questioned some of the moves that they were taking. And they always took the time to explain how this process truly worked. It's all about seeing the whole board from a distance. Most importantly, taking the time to explain it all to my family and me.
What makes this law firm a winner is how they all work so well together for the same end result. On March 21, 2016, my second trial was something out of the movies. Wow! What can I say about this law firm! I cannot express my gratitude enough. Watching Bill Sheppard and Bryan DeMaggio in action were amazing. These attorneys are veterans/masters in the courtroom. They took my case and turned it upside down. And when they were done doing that, they dissected it like a brain surgeon removing a tumor. From start to finish.
When the dust settled I was charged with four misdemeanors that could have resulted in one year of prison, a $1,000 fine and one year of probation. But this didn't happen. Bill Sheppard, Bryan DeMaggio and the rest of the firm were not done with my case. I never really understood what they had been telling me about seeing the whole board from a distance until now. It's not over until lady justice sings. On April 1, 2016, I had to go back in front of the judge to be sentenced. I was looking at eight months in jail because I had already served four months, $1,000 fine and one year of probation. Once again this law firm explained to my family and me what hurdles and barriers that we had to overcome to get the end result that they were insisting on. I could not believe it. This really happened. It was so well put together that I don't think that Perry Mason could have done a better job. Bill Sheppard and Bryan DeMaggio were so well-versed in the courtroom that day. I think that my heart stopped on numerous occasions after listening to these two veterans/masters of the courtroom pleading my case. They left no stone unturned. This is the difference in a good attorney and a great attorney.
When the judge asked me to step forward to be sentenced and he said time served, no fine, no probation, I was speechless.
The last thing that I remember was when Bill Sheppard and Bryan DeMaggio each put their hands on my shoulders and told me that it's over and I can go home now. I looked to my wife, family and friends and they all had tears in their eyes with joy. It was truly one of the happiest days in my life. I had been set free of this burden/journey that my family, friends and I had endured for the past three-and-a-half years.
God bless Sheppard, White, Kachergus, & DeMaggio, P.A., and their entire staff. And it is great to be a free American veteran. I now and only now can close this chapter in my life thanks to Bill Sheppard and Bryan DeMaggio and staff.
"He Talked To Me Like An Equal"
In 1970 Bill Sheppard handled the incorporation documentation for a little startup company - Curts- Gillihan and Associates ( Ron Gillihan and Don Curts). Bill Sheppard was in a small office then but already very busy. But he always had time for questions and chats. He provided advice and referred business to us.
I will never forget delivering papers to his office, not wanting to bother him or interrupt his busy schedule. He leaned back in his chair and talked to me like an equal. I was probably 21 or 22 and totally naïve about anything business, but oh I learned quickly in the next few years, thanks to the guidance of a lot of people helping me and believing in me.
Long after those years, I have never forgotten the time he took with our little company and the attention he gave to me making me feel as important as any client.
Thank you Bill.
"Best Attorneys Around"
After being charged with a crime that I did not commit, Sheppard, White, Kachergus, & DeMaggio, P.A., had all the charges dropped, cleared my name and reputation. Best attorneys around.
"I Am Very Thankful For Everything He Has Done"
Bill Sheppard is an excellent attorney and went over and beyond to defend me during a very stressful time. I am very thankful for everything he has done for myself and my family. Had it not been for him and his law firm I would have had to go to federal prison for many years.
"The Best Criminal Lawyer In The Southeast"
In 1994, the Duval County School Board filed a statement against my teaching certificate, and the Department of Education requested a letter explaining the details relating to a worthless-check charge. Mr. Sheppard and another young lawyer crafted the letter explaining that the matter had been resolved. The Department of Education accepted the letter and the case was closed. I recommend Mr. Sheppard for your legal needs without reservation.
Without doubt he is the best criminal lawyer in the Southeast.
"If Not For Betsy And Her Team, Our Lives Would Have Been Destroyed"
Betsy along with the rest of her team fought extremely hard for my family and myself during one of the most difficult times in our lives. If not for Betsy and her team, our lives would have been destroyed. She made us feel like we were her only client. She communicated our legal challenges in great detail with us every step of the way. Betsy gave 150 percent of herself for us at all times. I highly recommend Betsy White and her entire team.