, What to Look for in Hiring a Criminal Defense Attorney


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Rachel Mirsky


Rachel Mirsky Of Counsel

“The true measure of our character is how we treat the poor, the disfavored, the accused, the incarcerated, and the condemned.”

~Bryan Stevenson

The criminal justice system is a beast. It’ll eat you for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It can make you feel confused. Overwhelmed. Scared. Hopeless. Mad. You don’t have to face the beast alone.

I became an attorney because defending against the criminal justice system is not a solo journey. I observed the criminal justice system impact my family, and communities in which I worked. Standing up tall and proud against the criminal justice system requires an understanding and dedication to each and every client. An understanding of every wrinkle and sliver of evidence, both readily accessible and in need of extensive investigation. There is no inquiry too insurmountable to discover the truth.

The best way for me to help my clients is to immerse myself in understanding the boundaries our criminal justice system places upon the accused. I went out to absorb and experience what you face, what your families face. The racial disparities. The profiling. The assumptions. The desperation the system creates because it is so unnecessarily complex. I grew up near some of the toughest communities in Washington DC and Baltimore. Both of these cities have rough reputations. I volunteered with these communities. I asked the hard questions.

My thirst to learn expanded beyond the communities in which I grew up. I’ve worked with teens and prison reentry in New Hampshire, and clients facing the death penalty in South Carolina and Connecticut. I’ve mentored youth in crime prevention summer camps to give them hope and a second chance. I have represented hundreds of clients in Connecticut accused of anything from DUI to sexual assault to murder. I have partnered with drug rehab centers to give clients who have genuine illnesses they are fighting hard to overcome the multiple chances they need. Currently, I continue to work with criminal justice reform organizations in Connecticut advocating for the end of solitary confinement, and improved reentry resources.


My experiences have taught me to apply two principles when defending my clients – keep it simple and leave no stone unturned. How do these principles impact my representation of you? This means I comb through all the clutter and background noise to explain your charges, resolution options, and strategies to achieve the goals you seek. Timely responses to your questions. Communication. Accessibility. My principles also mean that regardless of the goal you want – nolle, dismissal, plea – I investigate every aspect of your case that could help or harm you. This does not mean wasting time going down rabbit holes. I work my hardest to get valuable evidence toward truth. A knowledgeable defense team is a powerful one.

Most importantly, the decision as to how you address your charges is yours. It is your life. Your decision. No one takes that control away from you. Ever. Your decision cannot define you – if you choose to not let it. Because you are better than the worst moment that the criminal justice system hands you. I am here to fiercely defend your decision and guide you through it. No battle is too small, whatever you choose. Know that I have your back. Every step of the way.


DUI Trial resulting in acquittal

United States v. Leon Vaccarelli, Federal securities fraud and money laundering

State v. Richard Roszkowski, death penalty trial


Attorney – Law Office of Douglas D. Rudolph – 2019 – present

Attorney/Owner – Mirsky Law LLC – 2017 – present

Attorney – Department of Public Advocacy – 2016

Attorney – Connecticut Legal Services – 2015

Attorney – Division of Public Defender Services – 2014

Certified Student Attorney  – Division of Public Defender Services, Capital Trial Unit – 2013

Intern – South Carolina Commission on Indigent Defense – 2012

Judicial Intern to Honorable Deborah K. Chasanow – 2011



Connecticut Criminal Defense Lawyers Association

Connecticut Bar Association

Connecticut Trial Lawyers Association

New Haven County Bar Association

Milford Bar Association


Prison Transition Legal Advisor, Soft Landing, 2019 –

Criminal Justice Trial Coach, New Haven Bar Association, New Haven, Connecticut, 2018 – present

Teen Court Mentor, Merrimack County Juvenile Diversion Program, Concord, New Hampshire, 2012 – 2013

Prison Reentry Mentor, Goodwill Industries of Northern New England, Concord, New Hampshire, 2012 – 2013

Volunteer, Prosperity Project (for youth crime prevention), Columbia, South Carolina, 2012

Advocate, Palmetto Innocence Project, Columbia, South Carolina, 2012



J.D., University of New Hampshire School of Law (formerly Franklin Pierce Law Center)

B.A., with honors, Goucher College


State of Connecticut

U.S. District Court, District of Connecticut


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What to Look for in Hiring a Criminal Defense Attorney

Criminal Law

Finding the right attorney can mean the difference between a reduced sentence, dismissal, acquittal, and a conviction. Many criminal defense attorneys offer free consultations to learn more about your case and goals. Not all attorneys are the same, varying greatly in the scope of services they provide. Looking for the right attorney can feel like blindly looking for a needle in a hay stack, especially criminal defense attorneys because people understandably don’t ever think they’ll need one – until they [...]

Law Office of Douglas D. Rudolph