‘Busier than ever’: Local criminal defense attorneys see rise in need for representation

MADISON, Wis.– Local criminal defense attorneys said they remain busy as they see an uptick in need for representation.

Criminal Defense Attorney Tracey Wood said her firm, Tracey Wood and Associates, saw an increase as the months of COVID-19 dragged on.

“We have actually been busier than ever with quarantine,” Wood said. “I think there was the initial scare and people were staying home, and then as time went on, people were starting to get stir crazy.”

Criminal Defense Attorney Jessa Nicholson Goetz said her firm, Nicholson, Gansner and Otis, S.C., also saw an increase starting at the end of May.

“This time with the release from the sort of shelter at home order, we certainly, and this is anecdotal, but we certainly have seen a huge increase in the need for services,” Nicholson Goetz said.

Both local attorneys said they’ve seen domestic charges on the rise.

“Things that deal with conflict within the home,” Nicholson Goetz said.

Nicholson Goetz said, in her experience, crime tends to rise in summer months, but 2020 is out of the ordinary.

“Without it sounding perhaps too obvious, I think people went stir crazy, and so you’re seeing a lot of criminal activity,” Nicholson Goetz said. “I wouldn’t be surprised if there as a spike here in the end of June, beginning of July.”

Madison Police Department confirmed a surge in gun violence. News 3 Now is waiting on data to confirm which other crimes have surged.

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