However, Jon quickly realized that such promises of justice too much remain aspirations rather than reality. Martin Luther King, Jr., was assassinated when Jon was five years old. He was four when the United States Supreme Court finally invalidated Virginia’s law making it a felony for intermarried couples to live in the state.
Jon thrives defending his clients in criminal court not because it is some sort of rarefied place to do intellectual jousting, but because despite the mess and ugliness that often faces criminal defendants in court and through their prosecutions, the courtroom is the decisive battlefield for obtaining justice.
Jon’s main motivating factors for doing the work he does is fully serving clients against the legally-backed might of police and prosecutors, civil liberties, and the thrill of battling for victory. As a result, Jon’s legal practice focuses on criminal defense and DWI defense, where DWI ensnares even those who otherwise support governments’ so-called get-tough-on-crime campaigns. Because civil liberties are not only protected through criminal defense, on occasion Jon also defends students caught in disciplinary actions, and defends the First Amendment through libel defense, adult entertainment defense, and defense of political activists and demonstrators.
Jon defends you regardless of your politics, profession, or personal background. He fights for your you no matter how big or small your case may seem. All that matters to Jon is that you are an individual needing a lawyer to fight for your rights and for the best possible outcome in your case.
All of the above is Jon’s call to battle for his clients. Backing that up is his over two decades of experience successfully defending clients at trial and in negotiations backed by readiness to go to trial, and by Jon’s close teamwork with his experienced staff.
Jon and his staff are ready to serve you.
LAWYERING WITHOUT BORDERS.:
Jon believes in lawyering without borders, by being admitted to the surrounding essential bars and by litigating with an eye to transcending obstacles as best he can. He is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court, and the state and federal trial and appellate courts Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C. Jon passed both his bar exams (Virginia and Maryland) on the first sitting, including when the Virginia bar exam had a 45% pass rate (Feb. 1997).
INCORPORATING LEARNING FROM AMONG THE GREATEST UNIVERSITIES AND TRIAL COLLEGES:
Jon graduated from the highly-competitive George Washington University Law School (J.D. 1989) and Tufts University (B.A., cum laude, 1985). Through highly-competitive selection processes, Jon attended the Trial Practice Institute of the National Criminal Defense College (1994) and the full-month Trial Lawyer’s College (1995).
SHARING HIS LEARNING WITH HIS PEERS AND THE PUBLIC:
Believing strongly in sharing the gifts of knowledge and insight that Jon has received from his colleagues and teachers, Jon gives back with his criminal defense blog, assembling numerous trial workshops over the years at his office to brainstorm the path to victory, accepting numerous news media interviews to explain legal news of the day, and simply sharing back and forth with colleagues at the courthouse and over the phone and email.
LEARNING AND HELPING THROUGH KEY ORGANIZATIONS:
Great legal defense requires constant learning and retooling, including through sharing and brainstorming with colleagues, and serving worthy organizations. In that regard, Jon is a member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, National College of DUI Defense, Legal Committee of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, Virginia Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Maryland Criminal Defense Attorneys Association, First Amendment Lawyers Association, American Civil Liberties Union. Jon is a past Vice President of the Philippine American Bar Association of the capital area (1998-2001), Board Member of Helping Individual Prostitutes Survive (2002-05), and Board Member of the American Civil Liberties Union of the Nation’s Capital (1992-95).
PROCEEDING WITH RICH WORK EXPERIENCE:
Jon opened his current law firm in 2008. Before then, he was the criminal defense law partner at the law firm of Marks & Katz, LLC (1998-2008), a trial lawyer at Chaikin & Sherman (1996-98), a trial lawyer at the Maryland Public Defender’s Office, and an associate attorney at D.C.’s Weiner, McCaffrey law firm. During law school, Jon worked as a law clerk at the Weiner, McCaffrey law firm (1988-90), and a first-year summer law clerk at the then-named Federal Home Loan Bank Board (1988). Before law school, Jon worked for a year as a financial auditor at the Irving Trust Company (1985-86), an insurance assistant at an agency of Chubb Insurance (1984), and as an intern at Shearson/American Express (1984) and the Center for Space Policy (1984).