Tory Bernsen focuses her practice on criminal defense and appellate advocacy. Tory has successfully defended varying criminal offenses from murder to driving while intoxicated to . She has prosecuted myriad driver licensure matters and administrative and court review of licensure actions. Tory is a staunch advocate for appellate review of the merits and effective representation of criminal defendants.
But for her time as Legal Counsel for the Department of Revenue, Tory has been representing criminal defendants since she began practicing law. She has completed the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) course in the administration of standardized field sobriety testing.
Tory is the defense attorney for the DWI Court Program in St. Louis County. She is a Criminal Justice Act (CJA) Panel Attorney in the United States District Court in the Eastern District of Missouri. She is a member of the Missouri Bar, a member of Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (MACDL), and a member of the College for DUI Defense.
Denise L. Childress concentrates her practice on defending citizens accused of driving while intoxicated and other crimes. She has represented clients in 33 counties throughout Missouri, has argued before the Missouri Court of Appeals in both the Eastern and Southern Districts, and has written Amicus Briefs in the Supreme Court of Missouri on behalf of the Missouri Association for Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Missouri Society for Criminal Justice.
Ms. Childress has been honored with the Missouri Lawyers Weekly Women's Justice Award in 2020, the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers President's Award in 2019, and the Missouri Lawyers Weekly Up & Coming Law Firm Leader Award in 2016. Ms. Childress has completed the NHTSA DWI Detection and Standardized Field Sobriety Testing (SFST) Course, and continues to complete refresher courses as NHTSA updates its law enforcement training. She has also completed the NHTSA Drug Recognition Expert Course for Lawyers.
Ms. Childress is the Owner and President of Childress Legal, LLC, which she founded in 2019. Ms. Childress joined Carl Ward Law, LLC, in 2013 as an Associate Attorney, quickly was named Director of Operations of the law firm in 2014, and was named Partner in 2017. Prior to joining private practice, Ms. Childress worked for the Missouri Public Defender. In 2012, Ms. Childress received her J.D. from the St. Louis University School of Law with a concentration in criminal litigation. She received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Justice Systems from Truman State University in 2009, where she also minored in Spanish.
Ms. Childress has been a frequently lecturer on DWI law over the past five years. She has also taught on occasion at the St. Louis Police Academy regarding Probable Cause for DWI, what to expect in court, and how to testify.
Ms. Childress is a member of the Missouri Bar, the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the Missouri Society for Criminal Justice, the Missouri Bar, and the DUI Defense Lawyers Association. Ms. Childress is on the Executive Board of the St. Charles County Bar Association and a parishioner at St. Peter Catholic Church in St. Charles City.
Mr. Cameron Cooper is a sole practitioner in Independence, Missouri. He graduated from University of Missouri - Columbia in 2002 with a B.S. in Biological Sciences and Chemistry minor. After retiring from science, he received his J.D. from the University of Missouri at Kansas City School of Law in 2012, with admission to the Missouri Bar that year. In 2013, he was admitted to practice in Kansas. He was Legal Counsel for the Missouri Department of Revenue for nearly three years serving as both an administrative alcohol hearing officer and a trial attorney. In this time he heard and determined over two thousand administrative hearings, and handled administrative alcohol trials de novo and other license-related cases in courts across the western one-third of Missouri. He has been trained in the DWI Detection and Standardized Field Sobriety Testing 24-hour program.
Since 2015, Mr. Cooper has defended clients in state and municipal courts in Missouri and Kansas on a variety of charges. His practice emphasizes a particularly thorough approach to handling impaired driving-related cases and the attendant civil driver license withdrawal consequences. A significant portion of his work involves giving close attention to protecting or regaining lost driving privileges. He works closely with many area attorneys to achieve results in their own complex cases.
Mr. Cooper is a member of Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, KACDL, Eastern Jackson County Bar Association, and KCMBA. He participates in the Warrant Relief Program of the Volunteer Attorney Project in the Kansas City area.
Jeffrey S. Eastman graduated from Rockhurst College cum laude in 1980. In 1983 He received his juris doctorate degree from the University of Missouri at Kansas City School of Law. Later that year he was admitted to the Missouri Bar. In 1999 he was admitted to practice in the State of Kansas. Thereafter, in 2001, he was admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court. In 1987 he joined the then law firm of Duggan, Keleher & Svetlic. In 1988 he and Mike Keleher formed the partnership of Keleher & Eastman.
Jeff has represented countless clients throughout the state charged with impaired driving offenses in both jury and court tried settings. He has more than sixty published appellate decisions including Weiland v. Director, 32 S.W.3d 628 (Mo. App. W.D. 2000) which declared unconstitutional all municipal ordinances which prohibited being in actual physical control of a motor vehicle and Baldwin v. Director, 38 S.W.3d 405 (Mo. 2001) which forever changed to their benefit the licensing history of hundreds of underage offenders and State v. Mignone, 411 S. W.3d 361 (Mo. App. W.D. 2003) which recognized the trial court’s statutory authority to dismiss with prejudice in a pre-trial proceeding a criminal information wherein defendant’s BAC was proven to be less than .080%.
In 2008 he was the recipient of the Robert Duncan Appellate Excellence Award presented by the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. In 2009 he was awarded the Bernie Edelman Tradition Award by the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. In 2014 he was given the Charles M Shaw Award for Excellence in Trial Advocacy. Every year since 2005, he has been voted by his peers a Missouri Super Lawyer. He has consistently maintained a Martindale Hubbell AV Peer Review Rating. This preeminent rating, achievable only after admission to the bar for at least ten years, indicates the highest level of legal ability and ethics. It is described as “the pinnacle of professional excellence.”
His professional memberships include the National College for DUI Defense, The Missouri Bar, the Kansas Bar, the Clay County Bar, KCMBA and the DUI Defense Lawyers Association. He was past president for the Board of Directors for the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He is also the former Director of the Clay County Bar Association and past President of the Clay-Platte Municipal and Associate Circuit Judges Association.
Matt is a partner with Rosenblum, Schwartz & Fry. Over the past 15 years, Matt has successfully defended clients on charges ranging from murder to assault, robbery, and fraud. Matt’s focus is in the area of DWI, Drug, and Sex offenses. He also handles select civil cases and appeals.
Matt serves on the executive committee for the St. Louis County Bar Association, on the board and DWI committee for the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and as a member of the National College for DUI Defense.
Two of Matt’s passions are teaching Trial Advocacy II at Saint Louis University School of Law and serving on the board of his non-profit, St. Louis Impact.
Clayton Gillette handles criminal appeals at Gillette Law Office, LLC, and civil matters at The Accurso Law Firm. A recipient of both the Robert Duncan Appellate Excellence Award (MACDL) and the David J. Dixon Appellate Advocacy Award (MOBAR), Mr. Gillette is always looking for a new appellate challenge
Mr. Guilfoil received his B.A. degree from DePaul University and his J.D. degree from the University of Missouri at Kansas City. He is Managing Member of The Guilfoil Law Group, L.L.C., in Kansas City, Missouri. He has completed the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) / National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) approved 20-hour course in the administration of standardized field sobriety tests and is certified as an IACP / NHTSA certified standardized field sobriety testing instructor. He is a certified Operator of the Intoxilyzer 5000 breath testing machine, and has completed numerous other courses on both the Intoxilyzer 5000 and Datamaster breath testing machines. He has completed the 24-hour Drug Evaluation and Classification Overview Course, which forms the basis of the IACP / NHTSA Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) program. He attended and successfully tested in proficiency-based training at William “Bubba” Head’s, 46-hour Forensic Blood and Urine Seminar in Atlanta, Georgia.
He is a published author for the Missouri Bar Association, having authored the “Standardized Field Sobriety Testing and Cross Examination of the Arresting Officer” chapter of their MOBARCLE black book series. He has taught numerous courses on DWI and other topics to lawyers, police, and other law enforcement officials for The Missouri Bar, The Kansas Trial Lawyer’s Association, The Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, Lorman, and Missouri State Water Patrol. He has been quoted in the Missouri Lawyer’s Weekly and the St. Louis Daily Record on DWI-related issues.
Mr. Guilfoil is a founding member of The DUI Defense Lawyers Association, and a past Missouri State Delegate of The National College of DUI Defense. He is a member of The American Association of DUI Trial Lawyers, the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He has been listed since 2010 in Super Lawyers.
Mr. Scott Hamilton is a partner at Aull, Sherman, Worthington, Giorza & Hamilton, L.L.C. in Lexington, Missouri. He is a Past President of the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and a member of the National College of DWI Defenders. He is a member of Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys and a member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He graduated cum laude at Northern Illinois School of Law in Dekalb, Illinois in 1994 and is a graduate of Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA in 1990.
Travis Jones has been an instructor in the law enforcement field for the last 19 years. He has taught over 4,000 hours for civilian and military police academies and installations. Advanced instruction has been done in the field of drug impairment, blood testing, and crash investigation. Travis Jones has been an instructor and speaker for organizations such as the Missouri Office of Prosecution Services, International Association of Chiefs of Police, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Lifesavers Conference, state and national prosecutors’ offices, and the Missouri Sheriff’s Association.
Travis received his Bachelor’s degree and Master of Science degree from Lindenwood University. He has developed a wide range of programs, including DWI enforcement (Alcohol and Drug), police traffic radar, and basic and advanced crash investigation. He has served as the administrator for several schools, including IACP Drug Recognition Expert Schools. He has successfully completed both the Borkenstein School of Alcohol and the Borkenstein School of Drug Effects on Humans at Indiana University.
Travis completed training manuals and programs for the US Marine Corps Law Enforcement Program from 2010 to 2016. These manuals include the SFST Refresher, SFST Basic, SFST Instructor, Intoxilyzer and Intoximeters Breath Testing Instruments/ Preliminary Breath Testing Operator and Supervisor, Drugged Driver Identification and Advanced Drugged Driver, Radar Basic and Instructor, Basic Crash Investigations, and Lidar Basic/ Instructor.
He has instructed these courses for the US Marine Corps, US Air Force, US Navy, and US Army. He coordinated and supervised training videos in DWI Enforcement that are used by police departments. Travis has developed and taught courses for attorneys and legal professionals, including alcohol/drug use detection, DWI Enforcement/Standardized Field Sobriety Testing, Breath/blood testing, and speed measurement. Travis has also instructed
on Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, alcohol/drug effects on humans, and numerous other courses to private companies, public entities, and medical professionals.
Denise’s practice emphasizes DWI defense in both municipal and state courts. Denise received her law degree from Georgetown University Law Center in 1994, and was admitted to the Missouri Bar that year. She is also licensed in Kansas.
Denise is founder and President of The Missouri DWI Institute, LLC, an organization dedicated to educating judges, attorneys, and law enforcement regarding the law and science of DWI. She is also President of The Missouri Society for Criminal Justice, an organization focused on DWI defense. She has been voted by her peers a Super Lawyer in Missouri and Kansas in the area of DWI defense. She is a member of the National College for DUI Defense as well as the DUI Defense Lawyers Association. Denise is NHTSA Certified in the administration of Standardized Field Sobriety tests and previously served on the Board of Directors for the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. She served as Co-Chair of the Bernard Edelman DWI Law and Science Seminar and was honored with the MACDL President’s Award in 2019. She consults with attorneys around the state on challenging prior convictions in criminal DWI cases.
Mr. Travis Noble concentrates in the areas of DWI, federal and state drug charges and other felonies. In addition to trying cases throughout the State of Missouri, he has represented and tried cases in both federal and state courts throughout the United States.
He served as a police officer from 1985 until 1990 and a narcotics agent from 1990 until 1995. He is a graduate of the Maine Criminal Justice Academy, Maine State Blue K-9 Academy, and the Drug Enforcement Administration Basic Agent Academy. He has instructed in the areas of Narcotics Investigations, Forensics, Criminal Investigations, Police K-9, Standard Field Sobriety Testing and DWI investigations.
Mr. Noble has successfully tried some of the most difficult DWI cases in Missouri securing a not guilty verdict for a 12th offense DWI with a .23 BAC, not guilty verdict for a 5th offense DWI hitting a police car head on with a .14 BAC and a not guilty verdict for a 7th offense DWI involving a serious accident.
He is a member of The Missouri Bar, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, National College for DUI Defense and is a past president (2010) of the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.
Joseph S. Passanise graduated with honors from Missouri State University with an undergraduate degree in Political Science and Communication (1991) and Master of Arts degree in Communication (1993). He continued his education as a Rotary Scholar obtaining a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of London, Imperial College (1995) and obtained Juris Doctor Degree, with Honors, from Washburn University School of Law (1997). Passanise is licensed to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals and both the Western and Eastern District Federal Courts in Missouri.
He practices criminal defense in Federal, State, and Municipal courts with Partner Dee Wampler. Passanise is a Past President of the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (MACDL). He has been chosen as a member by the National College of DUI Defense (2004-Present), National Child Abuse Defense and Resource Center (2011-Present). He has authored chapters for the book, “Witness Preparation and Examination for DUI Proceedings” by Aspatore in 2013 and 2014, and is a frequent presenter at Missouri Bar, MACDL and Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association (SMBA) CLE’s.
Passanise was selected as a Fellow by the American Board of Criminal Lawyers. (ABCL) The ABCL selects attorneys who practice in criminal law after a rigorous and vetting process and only 5 attorneys have been selected from Missouri. Passanise has been awarded the highest rating of “AV” by Martindale-Hubbell (2010-Present). The Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers awarded Passanise with the prestigious Charles M. Shaw award for excellence in trial advocacy in 2013. The Missouri Bar selected Passanise as a President’s Award Recipient (2009) and a Lon O. Hocker Trial Advocacy Award recipient (2002). The SMBA honored Passanise with the 2008 President’s Award for extraordinary service. Missouri Lawyer’s Weekly chose him as a finalist for “Lawyer of the Year” (2008) and one of the top five “Up and Coming Lawyers” (2003).
His peers have recognized him as a Best Lawyer in America (2007-Present) in white collar, non-white collar and DUI defense. The Wampler and Passanise firm has been recognized as having a “Best Firm” by Best Lawyers (2010-Present). He has also been selected as a “Super Lawyer” by Missouri & Kansas Super Lawyers Magazine (2006-Present). He is also listed in Who’s Who in American Law (2005-Present) and named a “Top 100 Trial Lawyer” by the National Trial Lawyers (2007-Present).
Scott created Twibell Pierson Criminal Law in 2019. Twibell Pierson Criminal Law focuses on criminal defense matters through a client focused and result driven approach. Prior to creating Twibell Pierson Criminal Law, Mr. Pierson worked at The Law Office of Wampler and Passanise starting in 2014. While there, he worked on Federal, State and Municipal criminal cases. He has been recognized as one of the top Up-And-Coming attorneys in Missouri by the Springfield Business Journal and Missouri Lawyers' Weekly.
Prior to Twibell Pierson Criminal Law, Scott attended Missouri State University and University of Missouri- Kansas City. While at Missouri State, competed on a national ranked policy debate team. He was also involved with Missouri State University, serving leadership roles including Student Body Vice-president. He was awarded the Board of Governors Commendation for Outstanding Service to the University. Further, he was awarded Greek Man of the year, the highest honor given to an individual in the Missouri State Fraternity system.
Scott went on to obtain his Juris Doctorate from the University of Missouri- Kansas City School of Law. While in law school he was the winner of outstanding oral advocate in the Ellison Moot Court Competition. Further, he competed on the national moot court team. Scott in law school also interned at the Kansas City Public Defender Office, which allowed him to work on high profile felony cases. Scott’s high aptitude in trial preparation and argument led to him being selected by faculty to the distinguished Order of the Barristers.
Upon graduation he worked at McGonagle Spencer PC, a small law firm in Kansas City, which specializes in plaintiff’s class action work, personal injury, and criminal law. While at the firm Scott was an advocate for clients who had suffered life altering injuries. Wanting to get back to Springfield and back into the court room on a regular basis Scott accepted a job with the Missouri State Public Defender’s Office, practicing solely in Criminal Defense.
Working at the Public Defender’s Office, Scott participated in numerous bench and jury trials at both the misdemeanor and felony level in state court. Scott had frequent success in felony and misdemeanor litigation.
Scott remains involved in the Springfield Community and currently serves on the Board of the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association. In 2020, Scott received the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association President’s Award given to an individual who is committed to serving the community through legal services.
Mr. Reid is a graduate of Southern Illinois University School of Law and practices primarily in the areas of criminal and civil litigation. The majority of Mr. Reid practice concentrates on complex DUI/DWI litigation and Summary Suspension matters including those involving blood, breath, and drug recognition. Mr. Reid has personally represented clients in over 50 counties in Missouri and Illinois, as well as multiple other states
Mr. Reid is a frequent lecturer in the area of DUI/DWI law and practice as well as the administration of Standardized Filed Sobriety issues and Alcohol concentration testing including but not limited to matters involving blood and breath testing in both Illinois and Missouri. Mr. Reid is a coauthor of the Missouri DUI Handbook of the Missouri Practice Series. Mr. Reid is a certified instructor in the administration of Standardized Field Sobriety Test.
Mr. Reid is a member of the American Bar Association, the Missouri Bar, The Illinois Bar, the National College of DUI Defense Attorneys, as well as The Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He is licensed to practice before State and Appellate Courts in Missouri and Illinois as well as the United States Supreme Court.
Bogdan Susan received his law degree from the University of Missouri in 1992. He is a founding partner in the law firm of Holder, Susan and Slusher, located in Columbia, Missouri. Mr. Susan’s practice is focused on criminal law, although his primary focus is representing clients charged with Driving While Intoxicated. Because of his successful representation in DWI cases, clients have been able to continue with their education or advance in their professional field. He has represented clients in many high profile cases that were the subject of national media attention and has been a legal consultant for both radio and television programs. He has also represented clients in cases involving the NCAA.
Among his professional accomplishments, Mr. Susan has been a presenter at numerous continuing legal education programs and law enforcement training, including:
MACDL Bernie Edelman DWI Law & Science Conference;
Missouri Department of Revenue Training for Administrative Hearing Officers and Law Enforcement;
Missouri Office of Prosecuting Services, Cops in Court Training;
Missouri State Highway Patrol; and Moot Court Instructor.
Mr. Susan has also been an instructor for the criminal procedure section of the business law class at the University of Missouri.
Dan Viets is an attorney in private practice in Columbia, MO, concentrating on the defense of marijuana cases. Dan served as Chair of the campaign Board responsible for placing Missouri's Constitutional medical marijuana law on the ballot and supported its passage by 66% of Missouri voters. He helped draft Article XIV, which is now Missouri's Constitutional medical marijuana law.
He has served for many years as the Missouri State Coordinator for NORML. He is a former president of the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, former chair of the board of the Mid-Missouri ACLU, former president of the University of Missouri student body and former chair of the City of Columbia Human Rights Commission. Dan hosts a weekly radio program, called "Sex, Drugs and Civil Liberties", on a community station affiliated with National Public Radio.
Dan was the recipient of the 1993 Martin Luther King Association's "Keeping the Dream Alive" award and the 1995 Mid-Missouri "Civil Libertarian of the Year." Dan was named High Times Freedom Fighter of the Month in March, 2005 for his work helping to pass both a marijuana decriminalization initiative and a medical marijuana initiative in the November, 2004 election in Columbia. He received the 2005 Atticus Finch Outstanding Criminal Defense Lawyer award from the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. In January, 2006 he received the Trailblazer award from the Mid-Missouri NAACP. He received the "Audiencey Award" from Conan O'Brien on the Tonight Show for looking most like the college professor who could always get you weed.
Dan has also been recognized by Best Lawyers, Super Lawyers, America's Top 100 Criminal Defense Attorneys, Lawyers of Distinction and National Trial Lawyers for exhibiting excellence in the field of criminal law.
Carl M. Ward is a nationally recognized attorney who defends the rights of citizens accused of driving while intoxicated. During his 35 year career, he has defended thousands of Missourians accused of DWI in nearly 90 counties in Missouri. Carl has prosecuted and/or defended over 50 appeals related to DWI, and argued cases before the Missouri Supreme Court and all three District Courts of Appeal. Two of his landmark cases include Paty v. Director of Revenue, 168 S.W.3d 625 (2005) and York v. Director of Revenue, 186 S.W.3d 267 (Mo. 2006), which established the rule of law that a trial court can disregard the results of improperly administered field sobriety tests when deciding whether there was probable cause to arrest a driver for DWI.
Carl has also served as an instructor at dozens of law enforcement training programs around the State of Missouri on DWI Detection and Standardized Field Sobriety testing and is highly respected among the law enforcement community. He has long held an AV Preeminent rating by Martindale-Hubbell, and has received numerous awards, including the Robert Duncan Appellate Excellence Award, the Bernard Edelman Tradition Award, and the National Leadership Award from the National College for DUI Defense. Carl is a Past President of the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and is currently a member of the Board of Governors for the Missouri Bar Association.