Adam Stone is a criminal defense attorney with his own firm based in northern Ohio. Adam called us to tell us about a win at trial, and about how he used TrialPad to help convince the jury his client was innocent. He told us that as an attorney from a small firm, TrialPad lets you “swing with the big guys”. He shared his experience and gave us permission to share it with you.
Adam Stone initially heard of our apps while listening to a National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers podcast with F. Lee Bailey (yes, that F. Lee Bailey). TrialPad was described as “the must-have software for criminal defense”, as criminal defense attorneys have to be able to put on a show for the jury that allows them to visualize the case, and understand the defendant. Adam downloaded the LIT SUITE, and got started.
After using LIT SOFTWARE apps for a while, Adam purchased iPads for his entire office. Their typical workflow is to have the paralegal staff scan and load discovery, witness lists, videos, background checks, including divorce filings, bankruptcies, etc, and any law enforcement documentation into DocReviewPad. Having everything digitally available on the iPad means that he no longer has to carry boxes of documents to meet with clients, witnesses, and the prosecutor. There is a litigation team meeting a couple of times a week to discuss all current cases, their progress, and what needs to be done, ensuring open communication and coordination—a key to keeping a paperless office organized. He told us that “if you use them right, and strategically, the apps can be used by everyone in the firm to have a role in preparing for trial”.
As Adam meets with all the important parties in a matter, the evidence that is most important to his case and to his client’s story becomes obvious. Adam assigns various issue codes within DocReviewPad and transfers what is needed into TrialPad for hearings and trials. The process of getting there often involves a lot of travel and time out of the office talking to all the parties involved. He told us that using LIT SOFTWARE apps is “like having your office, minus the staff, on your iPad.”
The case that led Adam to call us had lasted well over a year before going to trial, and having all the documents with him no matter where he was, was key to preparing the case. It was a juvenile bindover case in Seneca County. His client was a teenager being tried for murder, having been accused of stabbing the victim during a fistfight that was caught on surveillance video at an apartment complex. The accused maintained his innocence, but attorney Stone saw that, especially with the surveillance video, it was a case with a lot of bad facts. It would be especially important to walk the jury through the video, and visually tell his story.
When trial began, he used TrialPad for opening, reviewing the key video. The prosecutor was impressed, and openly said so in court. Throughout the trial, the video was played and re-played for witness after witness. Often the prosecutor asked Adam to bring up and call out a document, and even asked Adam how to use TrialPad for himself. The presentation of evidence during trial, and the ability to play the video was key to the outcome of the case. It took the jury less than an hour and a half to come to their decision of “not guilty”— a verdict that saved his client’s life.