Criminal Law Section

Francis McQ. Lawrence, chair

It has been an honor to serve as chair of the Virginia State Bar’s Section on Criminal Law for the 2013-2014 bar year.  My fellow officers included Joel R. Branscom, vice-chair; Andrea L. Moseley, secretary; and Lisa K. Caruso, immediate past chair. 

The following members joined the board on July 1, 2013: Manuel E. Leiva Jr., of Fairfax, and Esther J. Windmueller, of Richmond.  In addition, Timothy J. Heaphy, of Charlottesville, U.S. attorney for the Western District of Virginia, joined the board as an ex officio member.

Newsletter editor Professor Ron Bacigal published four issues of Criminal Law News during the year, and also completed the 2014 supplement to the Capital Case Trial Manual. 

The section sponsored its 44th Annual Criminal Law Seminar in February 2014 with a live session in Charlottesville on February 7 followed by a live Williamsburg session on February 14.  Section vice-chair Joel Branscom served as seminar program chair and moderator. Despite inclement weather for the Williamsburg session, total seminar attendance included 445 for the live February sessions, and an additional 190 for the video replays held in March and April 2014.    

The section’s Harry L. Carrico Professionalism Award was presented at the Williamsburg Seminar to Gerald T. Zerkin, capital case resource counsel for the Federal Death Penalty Resource Counsel Project of the Administrative Office of the United States. 

At its Long Range Planning Meeting in April, the board unanimously passed a motion supporting the mission of the Supreme Court of Virginia’s Special Committee for Criminal Discovery Rules, which is charged with making recommendations to the Supreme Court of Virginia on the discovery Rules of Court.  On behalf of the board, Fran Lawrence sent a letter confirming the board’s support to Judge Thomas Horne, chair of the Supreme Court committee.

In conjunction with the 76th Annual Meeting of the Virginia State Bar, the section cosponsored a Showcase CLE program with the Litigation and Corporate Counsel sections on Friday, June 13, titled, ‘Friending’ Electronic Evidence: How to Subpoena, Obtain and Present Electronic Evidence at Trial. There was standing room only for the program.

The following slate of officers and new board members were unanimously elected at the section’s business meeting during the Annual Meeting, for terms beginning July 1, 2014: Joel Branscom, chair; Andrea Moseley, vice chair; and Colette McEachin, secretary; Tracy Quackenbush Martin, commonwealth’s attorney in Halifax, board member; Seth C. Weston, of Roanoke, board member; and Judge William E. Jarvis, of the General District Court in Manassas, board member. 

On behalf of the board, I extend our sincere appreciation to outgoing board members whose terms ended on June 30: Judge Charles S. Sharp, of Stafford, and immediate past chair, Lisa K. Caruso, of Dinwiddie. 

At fiscal year-end, the section’s membership was 2,557, including 2,185 active and associate members; 320 Judicial members; and 52 non-bar members.  The section’s operating budget for the fiscal year was $52,000. 

Updated: Jul 01, 2014