Top Criminal Defense Attorney Kristin Paulding Reveals Why She Defends Serious Crimes - Virginia Beach, VA

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On a recent episode of the Five-Minute Legal Insights podcast leading criminal defense attorney Kristin Paulding founder at 7 Cities Law in Virginia Beach, outlines why she's motivated to defend serious crimes. For more information please visit

A conviction in wanting to help people and treat them as human beings, even in their darkest times, are the primary motivators for Virginia Beach’s Kristin Paulding wanting to become a defense attorney.

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During a recent episode of the Five-Minute Legal Insights podcast, Paulding talked more about her Christian faith, working as a defense attorney and when, as a prosecutor, celebrating lengthy prison sentences in her cases eventually left her questioning her role.

Paulding, of Virginia Beach’s 7 Cities Law Attorney, said she began as a prosecutor while working as an intern in law school and continued on that “amazing” career path for seven years.

“But the main reason I transitioned to become a defense attorney was that I became tired of the work, and I didn’t feel that I was helping,” she reflected “When you are a prosecutor, you are acting to put away criminals, and you are just asking for jail time all the time.”

“We used to celebrate if you had a big win. If a defendant was found guilty and given a long jail sentence, you would celebrate.
After a while, I didn’t enjoy that. And for the smaller sentences, I would often see people going to jail, coming out and reoffending. Jail wasn’t helping, so I wasn’t helping.”

Now, as a defense attorney for 6 years, she said: “Someone who comes to me is often in a stressful situation, and I want to help them through their experience. I am in a position where I know the system, the charges, and I can be a guiding light for someone in a process that can take up to a couple of years.”

“I don’t let their charges define them. I don’t see a murderer or a thief. I am more interested in knowing them as a person and
why they ended up in this situation. I don’t see you as your crime but as a person in a bad situation that requires help, and I will support and respect you throughout the process.”

She cited one example of a person that came to her as a heroin addict in a deeply entrenched lifestyle “and I thought he had no chance.”

She added: “I didn’t see a way out for him. Years and years went by, he was getting charged and consistently screwing up.
Finally, one day, he stopped taking drugs. He is now caring for his brother, he is healthy and has done a complete turnaround from what I saw in my office during those dark moments in his life.”

Paulding went on: “It is part of my mission statement that I want to see people become better versions of themselves. And clearly, when you are charged with a crime you are in a dark place, sometimes as low as can be. I want to figure out how I can pull you up..

“I have remained on the court appointed list in Virginia Beach and Norfolk where people can’t afford an attorney. The court will appoint them an attorney, such as myself. I will work at a greatly reduced fee, but it is important for me to work within the community as I believe everyone deserves an opportunity to have quality representation.”

On her Christian faith, she added: “I just felt this calling to help people who are in a dark place. I feel that many people in this world feel they are not worthy and unrecognized.

‘It is an honor to be in this challenging job and I try to give hope to people who feel they are in a hopeless situation. I try to keep them positive in a dark situation, irrespective of whether they are guilty or not. They need to know that someone is wanting to hold them up, and I can be that one.”


Contact Info:
Name: Kristin Paulding
Email: Send Email
Organization: 7 Cities Law
Address: Building 4, #423, 291 Independence Blvd, Virginia Beach, VA 23462
Phone: 757-716-7494

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Release ID: 89048222

Name: Kristin Paulding
Email: Send Email
Organization: 7 Cities Law
Address: Building 4, #423, 291 Independence Blvd, Virginia Beach, VA 23462