Pat Ford is a criminal defense lawyer in San Diego who represents convicted defendants on appeal in the state and federal courts. He’s won various honors including “Appellate Lawyer of the Year” from the San Diego Criminal Defense Bar Association for his work in getting a death sentence reversed in the California Supreme Court in 2008. In 2014, he appeared in the U.S. Supreme Court, along with Stanford Professor Jeff Fisher in a case that expanded the privacy rights of cell phone users and all citizens in the modern age. He also writes articles regularly for criminal defense organizations and lectures on criminal law-related topics. He’s currently on the 2015 faculty for the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He received his undergraduate degree from Georgetown in 1980 and his law degree from the University of San Diego in 1983.
Pat has also written and published the California Criminal Law Reporter (a case law digest used by judges and lawyers around the state) since 1983.
2015 SD Criminal Defense Bar Association Appellate Attorney of the Year
2015 Paul Bell award for Appellate Achievement
Riley v. California (2014) 134 S.Ct.2473. An important U.S. Supreme Court case where the court unanimously found the warrantless search of the defendant’s cell phone violated the Fourth Amendment.
People v. Goodman (2014) (D063787). Murder conviction reversed due to improper interrogation techniques used by the police.
In re Arevalos (2014). Sexual battery by a police officer conviction reversed based on the state’s failure to provide the defense with evidence of innocence.
People v. Villapando (2013) (G046110). Reversal of sex charges following police sting operation based on the court’s failure to instruct the jury on entrapment.
People v. Sifuentes (2012) 195 Cal.App.4th 410. Reversal of weapon possession and gang enhancement based on an incorrect legal theory.
In re Hill (2011) 198 Cal.App.4th 1008. Reversal of multiple child molest counts and 16 life prison terms based on trial counsel’s failure to challenge the prosecutor’s medical expert with evidence of innocence.
Maxwell v. Roe (2010) 606 F.3d 561. Reversal of murder conviction based on the trial court’s failure to hold mental competency proceedings. The conviction was reversed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals after 12 years of litigation in the state and federal appellate courts.
People v. Wilson (2008) 44 Cal.4th 758. Death sentence reversed by the California Supreme Court based on the improper discharge of a dissenting juror during deliberations.