Monday, April 2, 2012
Experienced Criminal Trial Lawyer Running for County Prosecutor
A Livingston County attorney with extensive criminal trial experience is running for Livingston County Prosecutor, seeking to replace incumbent David Morse who is not seeking another term in November.
Matt Evans of Green Oak Township says his 16 years of courtroom experience give him the experience to be a strong prosecutor who will keep Livingston County residents safe. He filed his paperwork for the post Monday (April 2, 2012) with the Livingston County Clerk's office in Howell.
"I am anxious use my extensive experience to serve the people of Livingston County and to ensure that our families and homes remain safe," Evans said. "As a defense attorney I had to be able to put myself in the shoes of the prosecutor in order to effectively represent my clients. This experience will be invaluable as County Prosecutor.
"An important aspect of being the Prosecutor is managing an office. Before beginning my law practice I was a Vice President and Controller of Michigan National Bank’s mortgage subsidiary. I have 15 years of experience managing staffs and making budgets."
As a defense attorney, Evans has completed more than 25 homicide trials and more than 100 other felony and misdemeanor trials for cases involving armed robbery, drugs, embezzlement, and kidnapping.
"Fortunately, Livingston County does not experience the same levels of crime that I have dealt with in the Detroit Metropolitan area. I pledge to be a tough but fair prosecutor who will keep it that way," Evans said.
While Evans said his courtroom experience would make him a tough prosecutor, he stressed that a prosecutor must show compassion for those who have been victims of crime. Evans’ own compassion is demonstrated by his experience as a board member for the charity Help for Our Disabled Troops, an organization that helps wounded veterans who have lost limbs modify their homes to be more accessible and even to construct homes made especially for them.
Evans also is very active in other community organizations as well. He is past president of Lutherans for Life, served as chair of the Livingston County Democratic Party and has coached Little League. He attends St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, where he is a deacon.
An attorney for 16 years, Evans received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Western Michigan University in 1980 and earned his law degree from Michigan State University in January 1996.
Evans has an extensive record of participation in affairs of the legal profession. In 2009, he served on the State Bar of Michigan District Character and Fitness Committee after being recruited to participate in the review process for applicants seeking admission to the bar.
From 2003 to the present, he has served as a member of the board of directors of the Criminal Advocacy Program for the Third Circuit Court, responsible for the training and certification of attorneys seeking assignments to represent indigent defendants. He planned, organized and presented numerous seminars on a variety of legal topics for the training program.
In 2005, the Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan honored Evans with the "Right to Counsel" Award, given in recognition of his efforts to improve the atmosphere for attorneys who represent the poor by implementing standards of practice for attorneys for the indigent.
He served as president of the Wayne County Criminal Defense Bar Association from 2001to 2004, with a membership of over 300 attorneys. When a court budget crisis caused the closing of the court library, Evans attained grant funding and opened a legal research center at the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice staffed part time by a research attorney who assists attorneys representing indigent defendants. He also established a mentoring program for new attorneys.
From 2003 to 2004, Evans served on the State Bar of Michigan Task Force for Indigent Defense and was the key drafter of final language approved by the General Assembly on practice standards and funding of attorneys representing indigent defendants. In 2003, he was the keynote speaker on indigent criminal defense systems and standards of practice at the State Bar of Michigan’s Criminal Law Section annual conference.
He and his wife Kelly have lived in Green Oak Township for 9 years and have a son, who attends Huron Valley Lutheran High School.