IDS is pleased to announce a new program to support attorneys assigned to handle serious sex offense cases. Starting June 1, 2021, attorneys representing clients charged with felony sex offenses may seek consultation on those cases with Susan Seahorn or Lisa Dubs. We recognize that these cases are challenging and complex and hope that the availability of this service will help IDS recruit and retain attorneys willing to do this difficult work.
Both Dubs and Seahorn are accomplished trial attorneys with extensive experience in litigating felony sex offense cases.
Dubs was admitted to the NC Bar in 1987. She was a public defender in Scotland and Hoke Counties until 1996 when she returned to her hometown of Hickory, NC and opened her own law firm. She has focused on serious felonies and murder cases and has represented hundreds of clients charged with those serious offenses. In 2016 Ms. Dubs received the J. Kirk Osborn Award for outstanding work on behalf of indigent clients facing the death penalty. Ms. Dubs has served on the Criminal Justice Section Council of the North Carolina State Bar Association and the Criminal Justice Section of the North Carolina Advocates for Justice. Ms. Dubs regularly helps train at the N.C. Capital College for attorneys involved in representing capital clients. She has frequently shared her experiences with other lawyers as a presenter at legal education seminars for the N.C. School of Government, NCBA, NCAJ, CDPL and the Capital Defender’s Office of IDS.
Seahorn is recently retired from the position of Chief Public Defender in Orange and Chatham Counties. During her long and successful career as a criminal defense attorney, Ms. Seahorn defended numerous sex offense cases, drug cases, assault cases and other serious cases, and was a pioneer in the science of challenging eyewitness identification cases. Ms. Seahorn has been a regular speaker at presentations for organizations including the North Carolina Bar Association, the North Carolina Advocates for Justice, the North Carolina School of Government, the Office of Indigent Defense Services, and the Public Defender’s Association. Her publications include an article on child witnesses in sex offense cases for The Champion, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers’ magazine. Ms. Seahorn won the James Williams Award in 2015 for championing racial equity in the North Carolina criminal justice system.
Resource constraints may limit the availability of this program. Attorneys are encouraged to seek help as early as possible. For additional information and to request a consult, please visit the Defense Team resources page at https://www.ncids.org/get-help/consults/. Additionally, Ms. Dubs and Ms. Seahorn have a website available here. As always, Forensic Resource Counsel Sarah Olson remains available to consult on the forensic aspects of the case.