Shelia Balkan, PH.D. ,

Criminologist and Court Consultant

Bail Reports

A bail hearing is usually the first time that a judge will learn about a particular defendant. Or not. It is a time when a prosecutor will attempt to build a case for a defendant's dishonesty and dangerousness. It is also an opportunity for a defense attorney to remind the court of a defendant's human qualities, personal issues, ties to the community and character. A bail report directed at these issues can help to alter the bias that always exists against a person who is charged in a criminal case.

In a high profile case in which a prominent entertainer was charged with an assault with a deadly weapon, Dr. Balkan overcame the state's assertions that this individual was a threat to the community.

"Any attorney who has not availed themselves of the incredible services of Dr. Sheila Balkan, in connection with bail, preplea reports, trial consultation and sentencing, is committing malpractice."

David Kenner
Law Offices of David Kenner
Encino, CA

"Sheila really gives you the help when you need it most."

Donald Re
Law Offices of Donald Re
Los Angeles, CA

Preplea Reports

Telling a defendant's story to a prosecutor or probation officer is often as important as presenting a case to a judge. Plea decisions can limit a defendant's exposure to prison and expand the possibilities for additional and alternative solutions at the time of sentencing. An in depth preplea report can significantly alter the way authorities view an individual offender.

"In over 35 years of practice as a criminal defense attorney in both the state and federal courts, I have come across no one who comes close to matching the intellect, creativity and diligence of Dr. Balkan in the preparation of preplea and sentencing reports. She is truly the Rolls Royce of her profession. I have seen her reports melt the hearts of the most cold-hearted and rigid jurists."

Alvin Michaelson
Law Offices of Alvin Michaelson
Century City, CA

"Recently a Federal criminal indictment of mine was dismissed, in large part, because of how Dr. Sheila Balkan convinced the U.S. Attorney that my client was not the sort of person who would commit this crime. No one has better intuition and skill in the area of sentencing."

Richard Hirsch
Nasatir, Hirsch, Podberesky & Genego
Santa Monica, CA

Sentencing Reports

A defendant's sentencing concludes his or her case in the trial court and for many it is the end of the criminal justice process. It is also often the time when a defendant's legal team can make the most significant difference. Whether a defendant will be imprisoned and for how long are decided at this critical stage. It is also a time when a court can consider alternatives and what kind of facility a defendant will serve his or her sentence in. The interest of justice, a defendant's family and the community all play a role in these decisions. It is because Dr. Balkan can clearly tell a defendant's story and effectively muster numerous relevant factors that she has brought a new light to the darkest hour of so many cases.

"Dr. Balkan is the consummate professional. Her reports have always had a positive effect on sentencing. Because of her credibility, Judges pay attention to her recommendations."

Robert Shapiro
Glaser, Weil, Fink, Jacobs, Howard & Shapiro, LLP
Los Angeles, CA

"Dr. Balkan has a unique ability to find compelling individual circumstances for each and every defendant, and present them in a manner that is compelling to judges for use in sentencing proceedings. After Booker/Fanfan, these issues are more important than they ever were, and Sheila has the ability to work with defense attorneys to obtain the best possible sentences for their clients."

John Lundin
Law Offices of John Lundin
Seattle, WA