6 April 2004–Some attorneys, handling the “big case,” are just drawn to the cameras. It’s their moment. For these lawyers, getting attention from the media is “the end,” not the means. Self-promotion, rather than representing the client’s best interests, beckons the attorney before the cameras. Celebrity attorney Mark Geragos flits from camera to camera, seemingly without any consideration whatsoever to the needs of his clients.
And then there is Pamela Robillard Mackey, a true professional. Since agreeing to represent Kobe Bryant in arguably the biggest case since The People vs. O.J. Simpson, Attorney Mackey has shunned the cameras. She realizes that Bryant’s best interests are not served by throwing the media a quote. Almost as importantly, she has collared her client. Bryant has resisted the temptation to defend himself in the press.
Representing any client charged with rape is difficult. Bryant is likely far more difficult. Besides the intense media scrutiny, Attorney Mackey has the obvious to overcome: defending a 6’7″ young black male accused of forcefully raping a pretty white girl in an overwhelmingly white community. Attorney Mackey has filed numerous motions that depict the alleged victim as promiscuous and emotionally unstable. Many in that little white community will despise Attorney Mackey for so aggressively defending Bryant. Mackey doesn’t simply practice law in that town, she has to live in that area. Yet, at each court appearance, she marches past hundreds of reporters into the courtroom. She walks with determination, files well-researched motions, and has argued fearlessly in the courtroom. Because she hasn’t spent the previous year preening for the cameras, when the case finally comes to trial, the jurors will have no reason to question her reputation or doubt her integrity. Bryant is in good hands.