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"Lawyer of the Year"

Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association (2014)

Casey Keirnan | 2014 HCCLA "Lawyer of the Year"

The "Lawyer of the Year" Award

Every year, the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association (HCCLA) holds its annual banquet and awards ceremony in honor of those criminal lawyers who go above and beyond the duty they owe to their clients. To even be nominated for one of HCCLA's annual awards is a great honor, as HCCLA is the largest local criminal defense bar in the country, with more than 700 active members in the criminal defense community. Only the most respected and accomplished lawyers are considered for nomination, particularly for "Lawyer of the Year", which honors just one to two lawyers from the entire Harris County area. 


In 2014, attorney Casey Keirnan, partner at Mercer & Keirnan, was awarded HCCLA's Lawyer of the Year for his unparalleled efforts in defending his clients. Mr. Keirnan has long been acknowledged in Harris County as one of the best criminal defense attorneys in the state for his ability to obtain favorable verdicts for his clients. In 2014, Mr. Keirnan obtained a "Not Guilty" verdict for a young man facing life in prison for capital murder. During the trial, Mr. Keirnan grilled one of the investigating police officers for more than two days of cross examination, exposing significant holes in the state's case against his client. The jury returned a verdict of "Not Guilty" and Mr. Keirnan's client walked out of the courthouse a free man.


Casey's merciless cross-examination tactics and widespread reputation for success have cemented his legacy as one of the most skilled trial lawyers in Harris County and around the state of Texas.

The "Unsung Hero" Award

In addition to being named Lawyer of the Year in 2014, criminal defense attorney Casey Keirnan was awarded HCCLA's "Unsung Hero" award in 2010 for his battle against the Texas death penalty. In 2010, Mr. Keirnan became the first attorney to ever successfully argue a motion to declare the Texas death penalty unconstitutional. Mr. Keirnan was recognized throughout the country by fellow defense lawyers  for his incredible efforts. News media outlets nationwide followed the story throughout Mr. Keirnan's epic battle against the Texas Death Penalty. See a few of the more noteworthy articles below:

Never before has the Texas death penalty been under such scrutiny from lawyers and media around the nation. Defense attorney Casey Keirnan exposed the disturbing truths about the countless innocent men and women put to death under the Texas death penalty statute. Mr. Keirnan's compelling arguments reached millions of ears around the country and inspired hope for other defense attorneys to band together against the Texas death penalty in an effort to abolish it for good. The Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association awarded Casey Keirnan the "Unsung Hero" award in 2010 for his efforts during this time.

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