The practice over the first couple of years was a general practice. After maybe three years, it evolved into 80% criminal and 20% non-criminal. The non-criminal cases basically tend to be administrative hearings.
I’ve represented doctors before the Board of Medicine and nurses before the Board. I’ve represented lawyers before the Professional Conduct Committee and I’ve represented a variety of drivers for all sorts of issues before the division of Motor Vehicle Bureau of Hearings.
DWI Cases Comprise the Majority of Attorney Horan’s Criminal Defense Cases
Of the 80% of criminal cases, more than two-thirds of them would be district court cases. District court is where I handle DWI’s, drug cases, and domestic violence cases. Then maybe one-fourth of the 80% would be felony defense in the Superior Court.
Interviewer: I see you’ve spent many years prosecuting and then you changed to defense. What finally made you change over to defense from being a prosecutor for so long?
As a Prosecutor, You Are Employed in Public Service
David: That’s a good question. I got somewhat jaded after 17 years of prosecuting. Rookie prosecutors tend to have a truth, justice and the American-way white hat type of attitude. Unless they become street savvy real quickly, they tend to be relatively naïve with respect to how the criminal justice system works.
Five or seven years into my career as a prosecutor, I moved up in the ranks to the point where I started handling public official prosecutions.
For example, in those types of cases you may have indicted a police chief for tape recording other officials and using the tape recordings for political leverage. I did work on a variety of different criminal cases involving public officials.
Professional Sacrifices Are Expected When Someone Is Working in Public Service
At some point I started to realize how it was more of an economic decision. They call working for the government a public service. The word public service basically translates to you are obviously working for the public, from a salary point of view there is a sacrifice of sorts that goes with working for the public for many years as opposed to private practice.
Part of it was economic in the sense that, yes, it has been fun. It has been really neat to be calling the shots as one of the prosecutors. But I’ve got to look ahead to where I’m going to be in an economic point of view when I get somewhat older. So, off I went to private practice some 17 years ago.