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8880 Rio San Diego Drive, Suite 800
San Diego CA 92108
(619) 583-0350

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Samuel E. Spital

A. Samuel Spital & Associates
8880 Rio San Diego Drive
Suite 800
San Diego, Ca. 92108-1642

As your San Diego Criminal Defense Attorney and San Diego DUI Attorney, Sam Spital brings 38 years of integrity, dependability and good judgment, which are indispensable qualities in every aspect of Sam's life, and the most important attributes of an attorney.  Sam formulates his plan of action with each client's goals and expectations as the primary consideration. He strives to also provide each client with a thorough understanding of the legal issues, economic realities and alternatives. 
Sam began his legal career as a Deputy Attorney General for the California Department of Justice (serving from 1970 - 1978, in both the Criminal and Civil Law Divisions). As a Deputy Attorney General, he handled over 50 criminal appeals, in all State and Federal Courts. Additionally, he prosecuted several hundred businesses and professionals licensed by the State for unprofessional conduct, violations of criminal statutes, gross negligence, consumer fraud, white-collar crimes, and other misdeeds. He represented nearly every State Agency, California Board and Bureau in cases involving fraud, breach of contract, construction defects, negligence, malpractice, health care, unprofessional conduct and unfair business practices.

In 1978, Sam started his own Law Firm, eventually becoming Managing Attorney supervising seven offices throughout California, a team of 10 lawyers and nearly 50 employees handling over 10,000 cases.  Also, Sam served as a Deputy Probation Officer for the County of San Diego (2001-2002) in the Adult Field Services section at the Hall of Justice in Downtown, San Diego.  Sam's relentless focus on his clients and their respective needs and desires continues to be the paradigm for his law firm. We are Expert San Diego Criminal Defense Attorneys and Top San Diego DUI Attorneys; our motto is: "A Law Firm that Cares!"

Please Call: 619-583-0350

Your First Telephone or Office Consultation is Free!

Areas Of Practice:

Criminal Defense
Criminal Fraud
Driving Under the Influence
Domestic Violence & Neglect
Drug Crimes   
Federal Cases
Hit and Run Cases
Juvenile Crimes
Minor In Possession (MIP) of Alcohol Cases
Parole & Probation
Search & Seizure Protections
Sex Offenses
Three Strikes Crimes
Violent Crimes
White Collar Crimes    

Bar Admissions:

California, 1971
U.S. District Court Central District of California, 1971
U.S. District Court Southern District of California, 1971
U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit, 1971
U.S. Supreme Court, 1978
U.S. Tax Court, 1978


Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, California, 1970
Juris Doctor Degree

Cal State University, Los Angeles, CA, 1966

Representative Cases:

Miller v. Obledo, 79 Cal App 3d 714
Thole v. Structural Pest Control Bd., 42 Cal. App. 3d 732
People v. Lindsey, 27 Ca. App. 3d 622
People v. Wax, 24 Cal. App. 3d 302
People v. Williams, 18 Cal. App. 3d 925

Please Call: 619-583-0350


Our Firm

At Samuel Spital & Associates, our managing lawyer has more than 38 years of experience representing clients throughout California. As your San Diego Criminal Defense Attorneys, we are aggressive in our pursuit of justice, our goal is to protect our clients and to keep their records clean, to the greatest extent possible.

We do our very best, every time, to exhaust all possible remedies to prevent a conviction, help you avoid jail and avoid a criminal record. The depth of our experience and knowledge about all aspects of the criminal process are unequalled. Because communication is key to establishing a quality attorney/client relationship, clients are consistently updated as to the status of their case. Likewise, phone calls are answered promptly, and you can contact us twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.

We want to serve as your San Diego Criminal Law Defense Lawyers from our conveniently located offices in San Diego. If you have been arrested or charged with a misdemeanor, felony, Sex Crime, a Drug Crime, DUI, Minor in Possession (MIP), Domestic Violence, Assault and Battery, Theft, probation violation &/or any criminal case, contact us at 619-664-4761 or send an e-mail now so we can help. Our founding attorney, Sam Spital, is a former Deputy Attorney General and Probation Officer who knows criminal law. Click Contact Us Now to reach your San Diego Criminal Defense Lawyers and San Diego DUI Defense Attorneys and to ask Sam a question about your criminal defense!

Practice Areas

All California Court & All United States

Federal Court

Criminal Defense Lawyers


Need a Strong Superior Court or Federal Criminal Defense?

Call Us 24 Hours a Day - 7 Days a Week at 619-583-0350

"A Law Firm That Cares!" Since 1971


As your San Diego State and Federal criminal defense attorneys, Samuel Spital & Associates handle juvenile and adult criminal cases, both felonies and misdemeanors whether in settlement or trial , including the following:



We want to be your Superior Court Trial and

United States District Court

Criminal Defense Trial Lawyers


We will defend your rights at every stage of your criminal case, from police contact, interrogations, detention, arrest and arraignment, through to the Trial of your case.


CONTACT US when you want tough, smart and strong California and Federal criminal defense trial lawyers and DUI attorneys.

We care about your needs and we are here for you.

When a Crime Has Been Committed

Once a suspect has been identified to law enforcement officers, they will attempt to make an arrest. Before law enforcement can arrest anyone, however the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution requires that there be probable cause to make an arrest. Probable cause means that if a person of ordinary caution and prudence would have a strong suspicion of a person's guilt, that suspect can be taken into custody.

A verbal complaint to a law enforcement officer by the victim or a witness to a crime may be enough to support probable cause. If there is insufficient evidence at the scene, law enforcement may detain a person to conduct a brief investigation. In order to arrest a suspect without a warrant, however, law enforcement must have a reasonable suspicion that a crime was committed, is currently being committed, or is about to be committed. Law enforcement officers must be able to articulate specific facts to support their finding of reasonable suspicion.

Once you are arrested, you still have certain rights that are guaranteed by the Constitution that must be upheld. Before a law enforcement officer can question you, you must be told that you have the right to remain silent, that anything you say may be used against you, that you have a right to have a lawyer present while you are questioned and that, if you cannot afford a lawyer, one will be appointed for you. These are your "Miranda" rights, guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and affirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court.

If Samuel Spital & Associates is your attorney, whether in the settlement or the Criminal Trial of your case, and we find out that you have not been given these warnings, we will request that the court exclude any statements you made to the law enforcement officer. (This does not apply if you volunteer information without being questioned by the police.) This does not necessarily mean your case will be dismissed just because an officer failed to provide such a warning.

Remember, you can only be questioned without your lawyer present if

you understand your rights and voluntarily give them up.


(For information on crime and safety for policymakers, researchers, educators, and the general public, a valuable resource is the National Criminal Justice Research Service. Another source of information is the Cornell Law School Web site. To order criminal law books online at a discount, go to Barrister Books.)


We Can Help with Bail

Bail allows you to be released from jail (unless you are released on your own recognizance). We can help you obtain a bail bond. Call Samuel Spital and Associates for a referral to get a loved one immediately released from jail on bond.

Arrest Warrant

Criminal Appeals

Domestic Violence

Drug Charges


Embezzlement & Fraud



Juvenile Crimes



Other Practice Areas

Probation and Sentencing

Sex Crimes

Violent Crimes

White Collar Crimes





An appeal is a request to the same court in which you were convicted (e.g. Petition for New Trial) or a request to a higher court to review a decision made in a completed California Superior Court trial or proceeding or a United States District Court trial or proceeding (Federal Crime Practice). After a Court or jury trial or the proceeding is completed, if the defendant is unhappy with the outcome and believes an error was made that adversely affected the result, the defendant may ask the trial court judge to overturn the decision or to order a new trial. If the judge denies the request, the losing party may file an appeal in the appropriate California or United States Court of Appeals.

To begin the appeal process, a written Notice of Appeal is filed with the clerk of the court in which the proceeding took place. In criminal and juvenile cases, transcripts of the underlying proceedings are automatically prepared. All parties are notified once the record on appeal has been filed with the Court of Appeal.From the date the record was filed, the defendant (now referred to as the Appellant) has a specified period of time within which to file the Appellant's Opening Brief, depending on the type of case. This "brief" is a series of written arguments that set forth the underlying facts of the case and issues raised by the appellant, including challenges to the Superior Court rulings or findings; the brief sets for the basis for reversing the lower court by reference to applicable statutes (laws) and previous case decisions. The Respondent (The Attorney General represents the People of The State of California on these appeals in contrast to the City Attorney or District Attorney who handled the lower court case) files their brief in response, and then the Appellant may file a reply brief.

Once the briefs have been filed the case is randomly assigned to a panel of justices. Then, the justices review the briefs and a memorandum that is generally written by a staff attorney for the Court of Appeal. Thereafter, oral argument is scheduled and the justices have the opportunity to hear the Appellant's attorney argue the case and if desired ask the attorney questions related to the issues raised. After the panel of justices hears oral argument, a member of the panel prepares and files an Opinion, which is a written statement of the court's decision. Some decisions are "published" and as such become legal precedent for future cases.

Decisions of the Court of Appeal are subject to "discretionary" review by the California Supreme Court as well as to review in the United States Supreme Court for decisions based on the U.S. Constitution and federal Statutes.

There may be any number of reasons to file an appeal of a criminal conviction. It is not uncommon for trial judges to make some errors with evidence, proper criminal procedure or sentencing during the course of a judge or jury trial. A criminal appeal may be the only way to correct those errors when a defendant has been convicted of a crime. Even if there were no serious errors, such as a violation of one's Constitutional rights, a defendant may want to appeal a portion of the judgment or criminal sentence to the Court of Appeal. This is especially true where the sentence to jail or state prison is significantly harsher than it should have been. In some cases, release on bail (see below)can be approved while an appeal is pending. Also, if the trial judge improperly admitted certain evidence into trial, and/or refused to exclude evidence that should have been suppressed under California Law or the United States Constitution, this may be grounds for an appeal.

You should be aware there are critical "time deadlines" that apply for filing an appeal of a criminal conviction. If you miss the deadline, it will usually mean the opportunity to appeal the case has been lost. Therefore, if you are considering an appeal of a criminal conviction, it is very important to act quickly and call Spital and Associates to discuss your case.

A common request for review of a Superior Court ruling and/or decision is called a "WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS." This is a request to the Court of Appeal to issue an Order to modify a Superior Court Judge's ruling. If it is granted, the lower court is required to modify one of its orders or have a hearing regarding the same. A writ also has strict filing deadlines.

If you have been wrongly convicted of a crime, proving your innocence can be difficult. At Samuel Spital & Associates, we want to be your California Criminal Appeals Attorneys and Criminal Appeallate Lawyers to file a Criminal Appeal or Writ of Habeas Corpus in either or both the California State Court &/or Federal Court system.

We will use experienced private investigators and crime experts to prove your innocence, and our criminal defense attorneys are experienced in criminal appeals and will fight aggressively to prove you were wrongly convicted. Our founder, Sam Spital, has handled dozens of criminal appeals in all courts in the State of California, including the Court of Appeal and State Supreme Court, as well as all Federal Courts, including the Circuit Court of Appeals and U.S. Supreme Court.

If you have a question about a criminal appeal or writ of habeas corpus in California,whether a state of California court criminal appeal or a Federal United States criminal appeal call us as your

San Diego Criminal Appeal Attorney 


 San Diego Writ of Habeas Corpus Attorney


CALL NOW at 619.583.0350

San Diego CA Criminal Defense Lawyer

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