Kristie Cohen graduated from Eastern Michigan University in 2006 with a Bachelors of Science Degree in Legal Studies. Ms. Cohen was able to complete a double bachelor’s program for both Legal Studies and Psychology, while simultaneously minoring in chemistry and biology. While attending Eastern Michigan University, Ms. Cohen worked for the school’s legal clinic and also participated in an internship at the Washtenaw County Public Defender’s Office. While attending Barry University Law School, in Orlando, she clerked for the Honorable Dennis Powers in the 52nd District Court in Michigan. There she gained extensive experience by coordinating the Judge’s docket, wrote judicial opinions and assisted the Judge writing Bar Review Articles.
Ms. Cohen exclusively focuses on clients accused of criminal law violations. Ms. Cohen has extensive experience handling criminal cases that involve mental health issues and major or violent crimes. Ms. Cohen maintains a strictly controlled caseload so she can give each client and their case the time and attention they need and deserve.
After graduating from law school, Ms. Cohen pursued her chosen path as a criminal defense attorney working for the Public Defender of the 19th Circuit in Indian River County, Florida. Her time at the Public Defender’s Office started by defending juvenile and misdemeanor cases. After a few months, Ms. Cohen was promoted and took over the defense of all County Court cases for the office and both Divisions for Indian River County. In just under a year Ms. Cohen was promoted to the felony division, handling all levels of felony cases and clients with all criminal designations. Ms. Cohen also began working on major crimes cases such as murder and capital sexual battery. Ms. Cohen participated in trying her first murder trial in 2010, with responsibility for all medical testimony and other aspects of the defense. As a result of her psychology background and training, Ms. Cohen was assigned most of the cases that involved clients or witnesses with severe mental health issues, NGI (not guilty by insanity) defenses or competency issues. Ms. Cohen successfully integrates her Psychology education with her legal training and is very well versed with the intersection of criminal law and mental health. This specialized education helps Ms. Cohen to protect clients who may have mental health issues or defenses. Ms. Cohen worked for the Public Defender of the 19th Circuit until 2011 and tried over 60 jury trials in her time there.
Ms. Cohen then accepted a position with the Broward County Public Defender’s Office and remained with that office as a lead felony attorney until July 2017, when she went into private practice. During her time at the Broward County Public Defender’s Office, Ms. Cohen was assigned as a felony lead attorney in multiple trial divisions. Ms. Cohen routinely handled major crimes cases such as First-Degree Murder, Arson, Trafficking, Robbery Firearm, Carjacking, and Sexual Battery. Her clients ranged from first-time offenders to multi-convicted offenders, and she has extensive knowledge of every enhancement and designation, such as PRR (Prison Release Reoffender), HO (Habitual Offender), and HVO (Habitual Violent Offender).