Attorney Profile for Larry Sandefer
Board Certified Specialist in Criminal Trial Law
Criminal Defense Attorney & DUI Defense Attorney
Serving Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Pinellas County, Pasco County, Hillsborough County, Tampa Bay and the State of Florida
Are you asking this question: I got arrested in Pinellas County, or arrested in Pasco County, or arrested in Clearwater, or arrested in St. Petersburg or the surrounding areas, Who Do I Call?
These are questions you may want to ask for your case. Do I want an attorney who knows the system, has experience not only in dealing with the state attorney but with taking cases to trial if I need to? What about an attorney who was a Lead Trial Attorney and a Division Director in the State Attorneys Office that deals with all of the criminal cases in Pinellas and Pasco Counties including Clearwater and St. Petersburg, an attorney with over 30 years criminal trial experience, and an attorney who was the first attorney in the Sixth Circuit of Florida (which serves all of Pinellas and Pasco Counties) to attain Board Certification by the Florida Bar as a Specialist in Criminal Trial Law? Are these things that might be important to me and my future?
All consultations are free, confidential, and there is no obligation. Please make us one of the attorneys you see when you are deciding the best attorney to select for your case.
And remember, every case and every person is different. Each case should be considered individually and on the specific facts of the situation. Experience with many different situations and clients may be something you want to consider.
Larry Sandefer has handled well over 5,000 criminal cases. Over 250 of these have resulted in jury trials lasting from one day to several weeks in length. These trials have included more than 20 first degree murder cases, and also multi-jurisdictional drug and homicide conspiracies, drug trafficking, sales and possessions, sexual battery, lewd and lascivious accusations, child abuse charges, arson, white collar crimes including trade secrets and fraud,armed and simple robbery, theft, assault and battery, domestic violence, DUI manslaughter, DUI, resisting arrest, shoplifting, abuse allegations of children and the elderly, embezzlement, insurance fraud, burglary, kidnapping, and many other criminal charges.
After over 35 years in criminal law in Florida, Larry is familiar with and has worked very often with the Judges and prosecutors assigned to the criminal courts. He is a former prosecutor of over eight years, with experience as both a Lead Trial Attorney and a Division Director in the State Attorney’s Office. In those positions, he not only tried the most serious cases, he also supervised several trial divisions and trial attorneys. He is one of only a select few attorneys who have the experience of being former Division Directors. There he was involved with the investigation and decision making aspects of these charges as well as sentencing decisions. As a member of the homicide investigation unit while at the State Attorney’s Office, he was often called out to the scene of homicides. The present Division Directors in the 6th Judicial Circuit still operate in the same manner as they did when Mr. Sandefer was a Division Director, and, therefore Mr. Sandefer is well acquainted with what goes in to decisions and it’s importance to the person making these decisions.
In 1986, Mr. Sandefer opened his own office and has continued in the defense of criminal cases since that time. He was one of the first attorney’s in the State of Florida to become a Board Certified Specialist in Criminal Trial Law, that occurred in 1987. He was the first attorney in the 6th Judicial Circuit (Pinellas and Pasco Counties) to earn certification as a Board Certified Specialist in Criminal Trial Law. He has maintained certification continually since that date. This vast background of experience gives him the knowledge of both sides of a criminal case from both a decision making perspective and a trial perspective, and the understanding of what affects those decisions by the prosecution and what goes into those decisions. What this means for you is the knowledge, the experience, and the court room skills to assist you in your defense.
Mr. Sandefer has continued his training through continuing education courses involving violent crime, organized crime, defending capital cases in Florida, narcotic investigation techniques, false child abuse allegations, and numerous other education programs by the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He is a graduate of the Criminal Trial Advocacy Institute at the University of Florida and has attended Masters of DUI Courses of the Florida Bar and the DUI Defender Courses in Las Vegas, Nevada.
What Mr. Sandefer and Sandefer Law Firm take the most pride in is treating our clients the way we would want to be treated and providing with the best defense and best advice that we can.
Individual Recognition and Experience sets Larry Sandefer apart when you are deciding who you want to fight for you in Court:
Mr. Sandefer has been honored with the national recognition of being named to the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers in America. This is a register which lists only the most distinguished law practices, those that signify the highest levels of legal ability and the adherence to professional standards of conduct, ethics, reliability, and diligence.
Mr. Sandefer has achieved a prestigious rating of AV by Martindale-Hubbell. This rating is a result of a peer review system based upon the confidential opinions of practicing attorneys and judges. Martindale-Hubbell has been recognized for over a century as the most respected source of authoritative information about members of the legal community. An AV rating reflects an attorney who has reached the heights of professional excellence and is recognized for the highest level of skill, integrity, and ethical standards.
He has been named a Florida Super Lawyer by Florida Super Magazine in 2009 and one of the top 100 Trial Attorneys in Florida by the National Trial Lawyers Association.
Experience, Background, Honors, and Achievements, Professional Experience and Recognitions
- Board Certified as a Specialist in Criminal Trial Law by The Florida Bar since 1987 .One of the first attorneys in the state to be attain certification as a specialist in criminal trial law.
- The first attorney in the Sixth Judicial Circuit of Florida to be awarded board certification as a criminal trial law specialist
- Named to Who’s Who in America 1997 – present
- Named to Who’s Who in American Law 1997 – present
- Named to the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers in America 2009 to present
- Rated 10.0 by AVVO, Superb
- Named to Top 100 Trial Lawyers by National Trial Lawyers Assoc. 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
- Top Lawyer of Tampa Bay- 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014,2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 (Tampa Bay Magazine)
- AV Rated by Martindale Hubbell, highest rating available in legal ability and ethics*
- Selected to Florida Super Lawyers 2009
- Selected to Leadership Pinellas 1998
- Past Chairperson of Florida Bar Grievance Committee 6A, and also Chairperson of Grievance Committee 6D (Hearing complaints against Florida attorneys and discipline)(3 year appointments)
- Former Assistant State Attorney 6th Judicial Circuit 1978-1986
- For Pinellas and Pasco Counties
- Lead Trial Attorney
- Division Director (one of three), supervised one third of the felony and misdemeanor trial divisions, responsible for filing and sentencing decisions, attorney training, trials of major cases including homicides, drug trafficking, sex crimes, and violent crimes.
- On-call Homicide response attorney, responded to scenes of homicides to advise and assist law enforcement in the on-scene investigation and meet with the medical examiner on scene
- DUI/traffic court supervisor
Admitted to Practice before the following courts:
- All Florida State Courts including Florida Supreme Court (1978)
- The United States Supreme Court (1982)
- The United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals (New Orleans) (1981)
- The United States Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals (Atlanta) (1981)
- The United States Middle District of Florida (1978)
- Pinellas County Trial Lawyers Association
- Pinellas County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
- Florida Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys
- National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys
- Clearwater Bar Association
- St. Petersburg Bar Association
- Florida Bar
- Colorado Bar
Pre-Legal Education and Background
- Bachelors Degree BS in Business and Management
- Selected to National Leadership Honorary
- President Phi Delta Theta Fraternity
- Assistant Director of Auburn Free University
- Treasurer of Business Fraternity
- Varsity tennis team starter for four years
- U.S. Air Force ROTC
Post college and Graduate School
- Masters studies in psychology and counseling at Northern Michigan University 1973-1974
- Active duty U.S. Air Force, K.I. Sawyer AF base, Marquette, Mi 1973-1975 (active)(1st Lt.), 1975-1979 (reserves).
- Procurement Officer course completion in Government Contract Law Lowery Air Force Base, Colorado
- Appointed by Base commander as special investigator regarding suspected irregularities in the 410th Combat Support Group Transportation Squadron
- Radio announcer and music director on experimental cable radio station in Marquette and Gwinn, Michigan 1973-1975
Law School & Legal Education
- University of Florida, 1977, Juris Doctor (JD)
- Served as: Chief Defense Counsel Honor Court, 1976
- Appointed and served as a Student Supreme Court Justice for the University of Florida, 1977
- President Phi Delta Phi Legal Fraternity
Continuing Legal Education
Larry Sandefer has maintained his continued legal education through courtroom experience, continued training, lecturing, courses, and seminars
- Graduate Criminal Trial Advocacy Institute at University of Florida
- Homicide Specific Continuing Education Schools/Seminars
- Life over Death
- Death is Different
DUI Continuing Education Schools/Seminars
- DUI,- Defending with Ingenuity, Las Vegas, NV, 2003, by the National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys and the National College of DUI Attorneys
- Winning with DUI, Las Vegas, NV, 2008, by NACDL and National College of DUI Attorneys
- “Blood, Breath and Tears”, presented by the Florida Bar, 1998, 2000, 2005, 2007, 2010, 2013
- Intoxilyzer 8000, Fl Bar 2005, 2010
- “Masters of DUI”, Fl Bar, 1999, 2009, 2014, 2015
- Strategies in DUI cases, Lorman 2000, 2005
- DUI defense tactics 1997
Numerous Courses and schools regarding the following topics:
- Top Gun Criminal Defense Attorneys Seminar (Co-sponsor) Don Cesar Resort 1996
- Trial Tactics
- Sentencing Guidelines
- Domestic Violence
- Search Warrants
- Obscenity and Pornography
- Use of experts in trial
- False Child Abuse Allegations
- False Confessions
- Police Interrogation Techniques
- Blood Spatter Evidence
- Forensic Sciences
- DEA School on undercover narcotics training
- National college of district attorneys conference on organized crime, Chicago 1985
- National college of district attorneys conference on violent crime 1984
- Annual state prosecutors conventions and seminar 1978 through 1984
* CV, BV, and AV are registered certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties, Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards, and policies. Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell Ratings evaluate two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.