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Criminal Defense

Contra Costa County Criminal Defense Lawyer

The Best Criminal Defense Lawyers

Daniel Horowitz is a Contra Costa County based criminal defense lawyer and certified specialist.  As of January 2024 there are only 7 criminal defense lawyer specialists in all of Contra Costa County.  Daniel Russo (Solano County) and Carmela Caramagno (Contra Costa County) who work with Lawyers in Lafayette are also certified defense specialists.   What does this mean to you?

Does Hiring a Specialist Matter?

Do “specialists” make a difference?   Ask yourself this question, “Would you see a general medical doctor if you needed brain surgery?”   

Specialists matter in complex criminal cases.  The term specialist is regulated and requires meeting strict standards established by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization.   These specialists are the best criminal defense attorneys in California.  Within the world of specialists many are not trial lawyers.  Daniel Horowitz, Dan Russo and Carmela Caramagno are criminal defense trial lawyers who are also specialists.  This combination of exceptional trial skills and legal specialization is exceedingly rare.

Types of Crimes We Defend 

  1. DUI

We defend crimes such as 23152(a) and 23152(b) (DUI) as well as violations of 23152 (d) (It is unlawful for a person who has 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a commercial motor vehicle) and 23152(e) (unlawful for a person who has 0.04 percent or more, by weight, of alcohol in his or her blood to drive a motor vehicle when a passenger for hire is a passenger in the vehicle)

2. Serious Felonies

These are the crimes with high levels of violence such as murder, assault with a deadly weapon.   The serious felony class of crimes also includes extortion, major financial crimes and other felonies where conviction carries the potential of double digit prison sentences.

3. Fraud & White Collar Crimes

These are the high dollar cases which can include workers compensation fraud, Penal Code Section 550 insurance fraud and medical fraud. [Daniel's successful work defending Prime Minister of Ukraine Pavel Lazarenko is an example of a federal white collar case that took years to defend.]

4. Domestic Violence

When domestic violence affects your professional license, ability to carry a firearm or your ability to see your children our legal team can assist you.

5. Federal Crimes

The list of federal criminal statutes is extensive.  We are highly experienced in federal criminal matters and appear in the United States District Court in San Francisco and Oakland regularly.  We defend federal cases nationwide.   Daniel Horowitz has been trial counsel in many federall cases including a San Francisco U.S. District Court MS-13 trial, San Jose USDC medical fraud trial as well as the Pavel Lazarenko trial involving the former Prime Minister of Ukraine. (USDC San Francisco).

Contra Costa County & Alameda County Jury Trials

Our criminal defense lawyers have over 500 jury trials among them.  Daniel Horowitz has appeared in courtrooms from Walnut Creek to San Diego.  He has dozens of jury trials in Contra Costa & Alameda County and cases and trials in New York, Riverside County, Wyoming and New Jersey).  Internationally Daniel Horowitz has appeared in courtrooms in Canada, Israel, Cyprus, Ukraine and The Netherlands.    Daniel Horowitz' jury trial experience includes over 30 murder trials, death penalty trials, major money laundering trials, physician fraud, medical billing fraud, honest services fraud and dozens of other serious felonies.   If you have a simple Walnut Creek DUI or a complex financial fraud case spanning the United States, our office has the expertise to defend you.

Top Criminal Defense Lawyers for Complex & Multi-Defendant Criminal Cases

Daniel Horowitz is a “Top 100 Trial Lawyer”, a “Super Lawyer”, a former law professor and television legal commentator.  High conflict criminal cases involving major frauds, murder charges, domestic violence with child custody at stake are the types of criminal cases that require the best defense attorneys available.   The Horowitz, Russo & Caramagno specialist team can represent you individually or because our practices are separate, appear for 3 criminal defendants in multi Defendant criminal cases who share a common interest defense.

Contra Costa County & Alameda County 

Daniel Horowitz is a frequent lecturer and publisher of journal articles for the Alameda County and Contra Costa County Bar Associations.  Daniel has represented community leaders, judges, police officers and many respected members of the Contra Costa and Alameda County community.  His first office was on 11th Street in Oakland by the Oakland Museum.  In 1986 he opened his Contra Costa County office and moved it entirely to Lafayette in 2008.   


We serve clients in Contra Costa County, Lafeyette, and other areas throughout California. Contact us at (925) 291-5388 to schedule a consultation.

We Defend High Stakes Cases

Daniel Horowitz focuses his criminal practice on cases requiring sophisticated legal analysis and difficult trial preparation.  A simple Walnut Creek DUI case has very different consequences for a medical doctor with privileges at John Muir Hospital than a supermarket employee who will struggle with the financial consequences of a DUI but not lose his/her job.  Doctors are highly regulated by the state and a DUI conviction will impact her/his license.  A DUI conviction during a divorce will likewise have implications far beyond the simple DUI penalties.  For high stakes DUI cases our criminal defense specialist team is key to protecting a medical license.   

When former Prime Minister of Ukraine, Pavel Lazarenko was charged with close to a billion dollars in criminal extortions and frauds, Daniel Horowitz represented him and obtained a dismissal on all counts where Horowitz was lead attorney. 

Get started with our firm today by calling us at (925) 291-5388 or contacting our team online. 

Contra Costa County Criminal Defense Lawyers 

Daniel Horowitz is one of the most experienced criminal defense lawyers in Contra Costa County.  His practice is local (Martinez, Walnut Creek, Richmond) but he appears statewide on complex criminal cases involving high level criminal trial expertise.

 A State Certified Criminal Defense Specialist like Daniel is the best choice if you are under investigation or charged with a crime.  

Our law office presents a strong defense because of experience and dedication to our clients.  Our expertise is based upon hundreds of jury trials and thousands of criminal hearings.   Daniel Horowitz' criminal trials have been covered on CNN, ABC, MSNBC, CBS and Fox News.   Daniel is also a noted television legal news commentator and law school trial law professor.


Federal Crimes

Nationwide our criminal lawyers defend clients charged with drug smuggling, Stark violation, medical fraud and other high stakes federal crimes.   Federal criminal defense lawyer Daniel Horowitz has the experience and expertise to defend you in a high stakes federal criminal case.


  • Public Service and Community

    Daniel Horowitz turned down many offers to join large law firms in their trial departments.  Staying in the Lafayette Community, participating in school activities, local music programs and local athletics was more important to him.   Dan is a long serving member of the Lafayette Crime Prevention Commission and a strong supporter of LPIE, Generations in Jazz, the Chamber of Commerce, Acalanes sports and many other Lafayette and Contra Costa County charities and community organizations.

  • Lawyers in Lafayette, Contra Costa County, New York, & Washington State

     Lawyers in Lafayette is located in Contra Costa County.  We have established relationships with lawyers throughout California and the United States.  Members include legendary New York based First Amendment Attorney Martin Garbus with whom we have worked on cases from Ukraine to New York and are presently litigating a case in Washington D.C. defending two journalists sued for “trespass” when they went undercover to unearth a major news story. 

    Other members  with separate practices who work on Daniel's custom teams include Vallejo, California Criminal Defense Specialist Dan Russo, a veteran of over 300 jury trials. 

    In New York we partner with the legendary lawyer, Martin Garbus. Martin Garbus is the author of six books and over 30 articles in The New York Times, The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times. Shouting Fire is a documentary film about his life and career. He received the Fulbright Award for his work on International Human Rights in 2010.   Horowitz and Garbus are presently set for trial in the U.S. District Court in Washington D.C. defending two journalists being sued for uncovering the Hamas connections of a well known (self identified) “civil rights” organization.

    Our physician defense group in Washington State is led by the powerhouse attorney of Washington State, Anne Bremner.  

    Our physician lawyer Dr. Mark Ravis is headquartered in Calambas, California.   Mark Ravis and Daniel Horowitz recently won a major victory in a worker's compensation fraud criminal case in Orange County.  All charges against their clients were dismissed on demurrer and on due process (Fifth Amendment) grounds.

     Lawyers in Lafayette is a slogan for branding purposes and each lawyer on this website is an independent lawyer with a separate practice.   

  • Introducing Dr. Mark Ravis Physician - Lawyer / Medical Doctor

    Our physician lawyer Mark Ravis provides the highest quality medical license representation.  Chiropractor/paralegal Michael Yates and lead counsel Daniel Horowitz complete the trial portion of the medical defense legal team.  We protect doctors on MEC review issues, medical board matters, practice group disputes and hospital discipline.   Daniel's Youtube Channel features numerous videos of interest to medical doctors.  He also discusses what it was like to litigate against Vice President Harris when she was a prosecutor in the Alameda County District Attorney's office.

  • Deeply Involved in Community Service

    Daniel Horowitz is an active community member serving for over eight years on the City of Lafayette, Crime Prevention Commission. He is a member of the Chamber of Commerce and a major contributor to Lafayette Partners in Education. Daniel is a strong supporter of Acalanes High School sports as well as Generations In Jazz and the Lafayette artistic community.

Certified Criminal Defense Specialist 

Daniel Horowitz is a certified criminal defense specialist.  On high stakes cases Daniel works with Dan Russo and Carmela Caramagno who are also certified criminal defense specialists.  This title is not self created.  It is a designation of criminal defense achievement issued by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization.  There are thousands of criminal defense lawyers, thousands of federal defense lawyers but only several hundred State Bar certified specialists. The State Bar of California Rule for Certified Specialists

"Attorneys may advertise as certified specialists only if they are certified directly by the State Bar of California or an organization accredited by the State Bar to certify such attorneys."

Specialists must meet strict experience qualifications, pass peer review, judicial evaluation, pass a rigorous written examination and then maintain their certification with specialized continuing education and courtroom experience requirements.

Daniel Horowitz has been a specialist for over 30 years and he trains lawyers preparing them for the Specialist Examination.  Daniel Horowitz has practiced criminal defense law in his Contra Costa County office since 2007.    

When you work with Lawyers in Lafayette we have 3 criminal defense lawyers who are certified as criminal defense specialists.  Daniel Horowitz and Carmela Caramagno have their office in Contra Costa County and do extensive work in Alameda County as well.  Daniel Russo has his main office in Solano County.  O multi defendant criminal cases, each lawyer can represent one of the defendants so that you have a coordinated defense led by three specialists.  In all of Solana and Contra Costa Counties there are only 13 criminal defense specialists.  Lawyers in Lafayette have 3 of them (and Dan Russo's extraordinary partner, Tim Pori is also a specialist!)

Call (925) 291-5388 to take the first step in safeguarding your future and protecting your rights in the face of criminal accusations.

Client Testimonials

Our Community-Based Law Group has a National Reputation
    “I'm an Attorney and would highly recommend him to other professionals (and others alike) because he's the very BEST at what he does”
    Dan Horowitz handled my complex business issue with magnanimity, compassion, care, promptness, and utmost professionalism. I'm an Attorney and would highly recommend him to other professionals (and others alike) because he's the very BEST at what he does and has an uncanny knack at finding unique resolutions with unparalleled speed and efficiency. What is quite outatanding is that he treats each client with kindness and compassion as if a family member
    - Lovely K.
    “What impressed me most was his unwavering dedication to achieving the best possible outcome for me.”
    I cannot express enough gratitude for the outstanding legal services provided by Daniel Horowitz. He not only possesses an in-depth understanding of the law but also demonstrated a genuine commitment to me. He took the time to listen attentively to my concerns, providing clear and concise explanations of the legal processes involved in my case. He made me feel heard and supported during this tumultuous time. What impressed me most was his unwavering dedication to achieving the best possible outcome for me. The attention to detail and strategic approach to my case were evident at every stage. I am eternally grateful towards Daniel for what he has done for me and I wholeheartedly recommend his services to anyone seeking legal representation. Thank you Dan
    - Kento T.
    “Daniel and his team did an excellent job.”
    Daniel and his team did an excellent job. He was always readily available to take my call and provided peace of mind through a stressful situation.
    - Reid V.
    “I would highly recommend the Law Office Of Daniel Horowitz.”
    My experience with Dan was great. I appreciate the knowledge Dan has and the professionalism they exhibit. I would highly recommend the Law Office Of Daniel Horowitz. My family and I are truly grateful we worked with him.
    - Brandon D.
    “There are lawyers and then there are real lawyers. Dan Horowitz is a real lawyer in every since of the word.”
    There are lawyers and then there are real lawyers. Dan Horowitz is a real lawyer in every since of the word. Dan is a Certified Specialist in Criminal Law. You will not find very many attorneys having such recognition especially one that hits on all cylinders as Dan. In addition to his knowledge of the law and his experience, which I found to be unmatched, i appreciated the fact that he at all times is genuine, which for me says it all. Thank you Dan.
    - Cory N.
    “The Best Attorney I Could Have Asked For”
    “The Best Attorney I Could Have Asked For.”
    - Katherine Ryken
    “Dan Horowitz was the best attorney I could have asked for during a difficult time in my career.”
    Dan Horowitz was the best attorney I could have asked for during a difficult time in my career. From the moment I met him, I felt believed, respected, and safe. He and his team were endlessly responsive and empathetic to me and my family. He fought for my case day and night, always keeping my best interests at the forefront of his mind. As I learned from Dan, it is never a good time in one’s life to need legal representation - but if you need it, Dan is your person, your advocate, and your best friend. We are forever grateful for his tireless commitment to justice for the people.
    - Katherine R.
    “Despite his kindness, I have never once doubted his ability to provide me with THE BEST representation in court.”
    He is approachable but serious. Mr. Horowitz is the perfect balance of what someone wants in a lawyer. Not only is he approachable enough to gain and value your trust, but he's a bulldog in the courtroom. Despite his kindness, I have never once doubted his ability to provide me with THE BEST representation in court. I'm so thankful to have found a lawyer capable of such a delicate balancing act.
    - Molly A.

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  • 2 Certified Criminal Defense Specialists
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