William D. Massey

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Criminal Defense Attorney in Memphis, TN

The Law Office of Massey McClusky McClusky & Fuchs
 | 3074 East Street, Memphis, TN 38128
Phone: 901-384-4004
Fax: 901-937-8004
Selected to Super Lawyers: 2007 - 2018
Licensed Since: 1981
Practice Areas:
  • Criminal Defense (80%),
  • Criminal Defense: White Collar (10%),
  • Appellate (10%)
Attorney Profile

William D. Massey is an attorney with The Law Office of Massey McClusky McClusky & Fuchs located in Memphis, Tennessee. A board-certified criminal trial advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy and possessing over 38 years of legal experience, Mr. Massey devotes his entire practice to defending the rights and liberties of those who stand accused or are under investigation of virtually any type of serious criminal violation, particularly drug and murder charges.

Throughout the course of his career, Mr. Massey has achieved unprecedented success advocating on behalf of the accused, and he has successfully tried cases throughout Tennessee as well as in numerous state and federal courts across the nation. During that time, he secured many dismissals, acquittals and not guilty verdicts, and he has negotiated numerous plea agreements to help lessen the consequences his clients would have likely faced upon conviction.

Widely regarded as one of the country's top criminal defense attorneys, Mr. Massey has earned numerous awards and honors for his impeccable professionalism and service, including recognition from the American Association for Justice as being among the nation's Top 100 Trial Lawyers and from The Best Lawyers in America* as one of the country's best trial attorneys in 2008 and 2009.

In addition, he received the Robert W. Ritchie Award for Outstanding Service from the Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers in 2004, and in 2001, he received the Lionel Barrett, Jr., Award for Outstanding Work of Death Penalty Arena and Special Congressional Recognition from the United States House of Representatives for Invaluable and Outstanding Service to Community.

A 1978 graduate of the University of Tennessee, Mr. Massey obtained his Juris Doctor from Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law in 1981. The Tennessee Bar Association admitted him to practice that same year, and he is also admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court for the Eastern, Western and Middle Districts of Tennessee, the District of Arkansas and the District of Mississippi as well as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court.

A leader in his field, Mr. Massey has written extensively and conducted lectures and seminars throughout the country on a variety of legal topics related to criminal law, and he is actively involved with several local, state and national bar associations, having once served as president for the Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

*Best Lawyers® and The Best Lawyers in America© are registered trademarks of BL Rankings, LLC d/b/a Best Lawyers and Co., LLC. The names, logo, and database are protected under the trademark, copyright, and fair use laws of the United States of America. Any use of name, including in electronic form, must be made only by permission and under the guidelines of BL Rankings, LLC d/b/a Best Lawyers and Co., LLC.

 
Practice Areas
Lawyer Practice Area Pie Chart

Criminal Defense (80%): Arrest & Arraignment, Assault & Battery, Criminal Fraud, Criminal Law, Drug & Alcohol Violations, Felony, Juvenile Delinquency, Misdemeanor, Murder, Probation, Sex Offenses, Theft, Criminal Domestic Violence

Criminal Defense: White Collar (10%): White Collar Crime, Criminal Law - Federal

Appellate (10%): Appeals

Focus Areas

Arrest & Arraignment, Assault & Battery, Criminal Fraud, Criminal Law, Drug & Alcohol Violations, Felony, Juvenile Delinquency, Misdemeanor, Murder, Probation, Sex Offenses, Theft, Criminal Domestic Violence, White Collar Crime, Criminal Law - Federal, Appeals

Selections

Selected to Super Lawyers for 12 yearsbottom-image

Super Lawyers: 2007 - 2018

Certificates and Credentials

  • National Board of Trial Advocacy

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To: William D. Massey
Super Lawyers: Potential Client Inquiry

Articles about William D. Massey appearing in Super Lawyers

About William Massey

Admitted: 1981, Tennessee

Professional Webpage: https://www.masseymcclusky.com/Attorneys/William-D-Massey.sh...

Honors/Awards:

  • Appointed by Speaker of the House of Representatives to a 6-year term on the Tennessee Judicial Evaluation Commission, Super Lawyers, 2007
  • Joe B. Jones Lifetime Achievement Award, Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (TACDL), 2012
  • Special Congressional Recognition, United States House of Representatives for Invaluable and Outstanding Service to Community, 2001
  • Who's Who, Executives and Businesses, Honored Professionals, 1999-2000
  • Lionel Barrett, Jr., Award for Outstanding Work, Death Penalty Arena, TACDL, 2001
  • Robert W. Ritchie Award for Outstanding Service to the Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2004
  • Top 50 Lawyers in Memphis, 2007-2014
  • Top 100 Trial Lawyers in TN, American Association for Justice, 2007-2015
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers, 2007-2016
  • Best Lawyers in America, 2008-2016

Special Licenses/Certifications:

  • Certified Criminal Defense Specialist, Western Tennessee
  • Board Certified Criminal Trial Advocate, National Board of Trial Advocacy, 1996

Bar/Professional Activity:

  • Memphis Bar Association, Criminal Law Section, President, 1998
  • Tennessee Bar Association, Executive Committee, 2006-2007
  • Tennessee Bar Association, Executive Committee, 2003-2004
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Parliamentarian, 2003
  • Tennessee Bar Association, Parliamentarian, 2003
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Executive Committee, 2003-2004, 2006-2007
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Board of Directors, 2001-2008
  • Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Executive Committee, 2001-2007
  • Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, President, August 2005 - August 2006
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1994
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit, 1991
  • U.S. District Court Middle District of Tennessee, 1998
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Mississippi, 1992
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Arkansas, 1989
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Tennessee, 1989
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Tennessee, 1982
  • Tennessee

Pro bono/Community Service:

  • This firm keeps at least one active pro-bono case, usually a first degree murder indictment where it appears that the government is substantially over charging the accused or that the accused is actually innocent. Two pro-bono first degree cases resolved favorably - one by jury verdict of a misdemeanor and 11/29 probation, the other by negotiating a reckless homicide with 2 years probation.

Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

  • NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund's 22nd Annual Capital Punishment Training Conference, 2003
  • Faculty and Senior Instructor, Tennessee Criminal Defense College, 1998-Present
  • "Wiggins & ABA Guidelines", Making the Cases for Life Seminar VI, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and Southern Center for Human Rights, Memphis, TN, 2003
  • "Cross My Heart, Hope to Die: The Pain of False Confessions", National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, New York City, NY, 2003
  • "A Diner Menu Approach to Preparing for a Death Penalty Trial: How To Serve Desert with the Main Course and Cook a Little Hash", National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, San Antonio, TX, 2004
  • "Friends Don't Let Friends Waive Opening", Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2004
  • "Closing Argument: Taking the State's Case to the Dump in High Profile Cases", Betting on Justice V, Arkansas Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Little Rock, AR, 2004
  • "Embracing Confessions: To Hug or To Squeeze", Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2005
  • "Themes Theory and Theater from Daringly Dangerous Minds", Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2006
  • "Opening Statement as Story Telling", Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 2006
  • "The Team Approach to Death Penalty Defense", Loosening the Death Belt, Alabama Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, Birmingham, AL, 2007
  • "Qualifying and Defending Our Expert Witness", Bench Bar Seminar, Memphis Bar Association, San Destin, FL, 2007
  • "Getting It On The Table", Making the Case for Life Seminar X, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Southern Center for Human Rights, Las Vegas, NV, 2007
  • "The Gentle Wind of Words, Moving Jurors from Abstract to Experiential", National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Key West, FL, 2007
  • "Suppression of Evidence After Berrios", National Bar Association, Ben F. Jones Chapter, 2007
  • "A Collage from a Believer", August, 2007
  • "We Will Remember", June, 2007
  • "The Heart of a Fighter", April, 2007
  • "Offer the Olive Branch, But Grip the Sword", February, 2007
  • "Offer the Olive Branch, But Grip the Sword", October and December, 2006
  • While President of the Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, six articles were written for publication in the TACDL's bi-monthly magazine, For The Defense. The June 2007 article was written in memory of my colleague and friend, Robert Wayne Ritchie, one of the finest lawyers and people I have ever known. The other writings were intended as a trumpet call to the criminal defense lawyers of Tennessee - a trumpet call to learn and develop the skills of advocacy and persuasion needed to thrive in today's hostile adversarial environment. Lectures and presentations are too numerous to list here. Please refer to the Resume/CV section for a listing of national presentations as well as those in Tennessee.

Verdicts/Settlements:

  • 2003 Jury Trial on First Degree Murder. Noticed for life without parole. Jury Verdict of Voluntary Manslaughter. Sentenced to 6 years @ 30%. Client is home.
  • 2003 Jury Trial on First Degree Murder. Noticed for life without parole. Jury Verdict of Reckless Homicide. Sentenced to 5 years @ 35%. Client is home.
  • 2004 First Degree Murder charge. Negotiated Plea to Reckless Homicide. Sentenced to 2 years probation. Client is home.
  • 2004 Jury Trial on Drug Case, Possession with Intent to Sell Cocaine in Lauderdale Co. Not Guilty jury verdict in less than 30 minutes.
  • 2004 Jury Trial on First Degree Murder. Jury Verdict of Misdemeanor Reckless Endangerment. Sentence of 11 months and 29 days probation. Client is home.
  • 2004 Jury Trial on First Degree Murder Indictment. Noticed for life without parole. Jury Verdict of Negligent Homicide. 1 year sentence @ 30%. Client is home.
  • 2004 Jury Trial on First Degree Murder. Jury Verdict of Voluntary Manslaughter. 6 year sentence @ 30%. Client is home.
  • 2005 Jury Trial on First Degree Murder. Not Guilty jury verdict.
  • 2006 Federal Multi-National RICO Indictment. Negotiated Plea to a misdemeanor with probation with a binding plea agreement.
  • 2006 Drug Case, 34 pounds of Cocaine. Drugs suppressed, case dismissed.
  • 2006 Class A Aggravated Child Abuse. Negotiated Dismissal.
  • 2006 First Degree Murder Indictment. Negotiated Plea of Voluntary Manslaughter.
  • 2008 Class A Drug Case, 4 kilos of Cocaine. Negotiated Dismissal. Client is home.
  • 2008 Drug Case, 56 pounds of cocaine. Negotiated Plea to 8 years probation. Client is home.
  • 2008 First Degree Murder. Negotiated Plea of Reckless Homicide. 2 year sentence to probation. Client is home.
  • 2008 Jury Trial on Second Degree Murder. Jury Verdict of Reckless Homicide, sentence pending. Client is home.
  • 2008 Jury Trial on Second Degree Murder. Jury Verdict of Reckless Homicide, 3 year sentence @ 30%. Client is home.
  • 2008 Jury Trial on Second Degree Murder. Not Guilty jury verdict.
  • 2008 Jury Trial on Aggravated Robbery. Not Guilty jury verdict in 29 minutes.
  • 2009 First Degree Murder. Negotiated dismissal. Client is home.
  • Here are some highlights from cases defended over the last 7 years. Many involve the most serious charge - homicide. There have been other trials on other offenses with favorable results, and there have been numerous felony drug charges reduced to misdemeanors - too many for this list. But no lawyer can win every case. While I cannot promise these results in every case, I hope to show that they are indeed obtained with consistency. Each case presents its own battle.

Educational Background:

  • University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA, B.A., 1978
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Office Location for William D. Massey

3074 East Street
Memphis, TN 38128

Phone: 901-384-4004

Fax: 901-937-8004

William D. Massey:

Last Updated: 11/19/2018

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