Derek M. Smith, Tacoma Criminal Litigation Lawyer
With more than fifteen years’ experience trying and hearing cases in the Washington criminal court system, Derek M. Smith has the expertise and dedication you need when facing criminal charges in Tacoma. Having served as both a prosecutor and judge in addition to representing criminal defendants, Derek has a unique ability to see you case from all perspectives, and he uses his vast experience to his clients’ advantage to earn them the best possible outcome in light of their charges.
Derek’s record of experience is substantial: He has personally handled over 15,000 criminal cases in his career as a prosecutor and criminal defense lawyer in Washington. This includes over 2,500 domestic violence cases, and over 2,000 driving under the influence (DUI) cases. He has taken more than 150 jury trials to a verdict.
Washington Criminal Defense
As a criminal defense lawyer in the Tacoma, Washington offices of The Law Offices of Smith & White PLLC, Derek represents clients facing all types of criminal charges. In addition to domestic violence and DUI cases, Derek also handles cases involving violent crimes (such as assault and homicide), property crimes (such as theft, robbery and burglary), drug crimes (including marijuana charges) and self defense.
A Career Dedicated to Justice
Prior to establishing The Law Offices of Smith & White PLLC with Tacoma criminal litigation attorney James J. White, Derek served as the head of the'domestic violence'unit for the City of Kent, and served in the'DUI'and misdemeanor trial unit in Seattle. While in Seattle he successfully prosecuted notorious strip club owner and alleged mob boss'Frank Colacurcio'for sexual assault. Derek later became the vice and narcotics liaison for the Seattle City Attorney's Office where he received the Seattle Police Department Chief's Award for his role in Operation Sobering Thought.
In light of his extensive track record, colleagues have described Derek as:
- A "top trial attorney," who is "able to work the [court]room and be very persuasive with judges and jurors."
- Having "a prove[n] track record provi[d]ing zealous representation for his clients and advocating for justice."
- An "absolute professional and well-respected in his field," who "always goes that extra mile for his clients."
- An "outstanding attorney with an exceptional reputation. . . . If I needed a criminal defense attorney in WA, he is the first and only attorney I [would] call and who we refer our clients to."
Derek has also presided over thousands of cases as a judge pro tem in Federal Way, Pacific and Des Moines.
More Than a Criminal Defense Lawyer
In his spare time Derek volunteers with local nonprofits. In 2010 he served as the president of the Tacoma Art Museum Activities Council, and he currently serves as vice president of St. Mark’s Lutheran by the Narrows Church Council. Derek is also a lifetime member of the NRA and a former PADI scuba instructor. He graduated with honors from Seattle University School of Law in 1996.