Joe Heinzmann is the co-founder of Speiser & Heinzmann, a New York law firm with 30+ years of experience in criminal trials and appeals. He previously worked as an Assistant District Attorney in the Bronx. Joe received his JD from the Syracuse University College of Law.
A private attorney contracted by New York City’s Assigned Counsel Plan (ACP), Joe has worked with indigent clients that cannot afford legal representation in state and local criminal trials for more than 30 years. His primary motivation is service: “This work allows me to both practice law and help vulnerable members of my community. I love hearing from former clients during the holidays, grateful for their freedom, who are leading law-abiding and productive lives.”
Joe’s previous experience as an Assistant District Attorney (1988-1992) has shown him first-hand the resource gaps between defense attorneys and prosecutors. With extensive funding for support staff, the prosecutors in his area are able to quickly review large amounts of audiovisual discovery in preparation for trial. Joe, by contrast, is a solo practitioner with a significant volume of cases and limited support.
The automated transcripts generated by JusticeText are helping to level the playing field for attorneys like Joe. He’s currently working on a domestic violence case with footage from multiple body cameras, calls from a pretrial detention facility, and several 911 calls. Before using JusticeText, Joe would have reviewed this evidence manually, spending hours listening to the files on his computer for relevant snippets and taking notes by hand. This approach was highly time consuming and labor intensive in cross referencing materials, overwhelming the limited resources available to a solo practitioner.
The JusticeText platform has fundamentally reshaped his approach. For this case, he uploaded all the files to the platform and used the transcripts to quickly find the most important sections. The tool’s search functionality allowed him to identify references to names across the various sources and develop a holistic picture of the individuals involved and their associated roles.
“JusticeText has saved me more than 15 hours on this case alone, and I’m generally working on 15-20 cases at a time. The savings add up very quickly.”
The time savings delivered by JusticeText not only help attorneys like Joe manage evidence more effectively, but also support the state’s entire criminal defense system. According to Joe, the New York ACP compensates lawyers for indigent defense cases on an hourly basis. Reducing the amount of time he spends on individual cases is freeing up money to address the increasingly large population of people who rely on the state for representation in criminal cases.
“JusticeText is incredibly useful in my work, and I hope all New York area criminal defense organizations will use the software to manage audio/video discovery.”
"All of the calls I've uploaded to JusticeText offer some value, regardless of the confidence level. When you have a large volume of material, being able to immediately look at a transcript and then cast it aside becuase the video isn't relevant to the case saves a lot of time."
If you are an attorney looking to make sense of high volumes of audiovisual discovery, there are many ways in which you can utilize JusticeText to streamline your pre-trial preparation process. Reach out today to learn about how you can get started with JusticeText.