Firm News & Press



  • Click here to read our blog, which contains the most recent news and announcements from our firm, including case results, speaking engagements, and firm publications.



Sheldon: Man continues fighting to clear his name in 1977 Portsmouth rape case (video)

WAVY (Hampton Roads, VA) – April 17, 2017 | Click here for the full story.


Woman raped almost 40 years ago in Portsmouth testifies she didn’t see convicted man

Richmond Times-Dispatch (Richmond, VA) – April 17, 2017 | Click here for the full story.


Joe Flood: Ex-U.S. Army reservist gets 11 years prison for Islamic State support

Reuters – February 10, 2017 | Click here for the full story.


Joe Flood: Ex-Va. Guardsman sentenced on terror charges

WTOP (Washington, DC) – February 10, 2017 | Click here for the full story.


Virginia Supreme Court orders hearing in nearly 40-year-old innocence claim

Richmond Times-Dispatch (Richmond, VA) – January 30, 2017 | Click here for the full story.


Jon Sheldon: Federal judge opens door for Norfolk man convicted of 1996 murder to get out of prison early

The Virginian-Pilot (Norfolk, VA) – January 27, 2017 | Click here for the full story.


Jon Sheldon: U.S. judge orders resentencing in juvenile’s 1996 Norfolk murder case

Richmond Times-Dispatch (Richmond, VA) – January 27, 2017 | Click here for the full story.


Brad Haywood: Washingtonian Magazine Publishes Long-Form Article on Comm. v. Schmuhl

Washingtonian (Washington, DC) – October 2, 2016 | Click here for the full story.


Judge reviews motion to dismiss Huguely case

The Daily Progress (Charlottesville, VA) – September 26, 2016 | Click here for the full story.


Special Report: Fight for Innocence — The Roy Watford Story

WAVY News – August 29, 2016 | Click here for the full story.


Jon Sheldon: Chesapeake Man Asks Va. Supreme Court to Exonerate Him of 1977 Rape

Richmond Times Dispatch – August 15, 2016 | Click here for the full article.


Victim’s mother backs Huguely’s version of fatal encounter: “It all contradicts the [prosecution] theory at trial,” Sheldon said.

Virginia Lawyers’ Weekly – June 17, 2016 | Click here for the full article.


SFH Partner Brad Haywood: Alleged home invader claims ‘involuntary intoxication’ defense in Fairfax abduction trial

Washington Post – May 13, 2016 | Click here for the full article.


Sheldon argues death row inmate’s case before Virginia Court of Appeals

Washington Post – March 2016 | Click here for the full article.


Jonathan Sheldon asks Circuit Court judge to free George Huguely because he was not given a fair trial

Baltimore Sun – March 2016 | Click here for the full article.


Sheldon raises significant issues in attempt to overturn murder conviction of George Huguely

Virginia Lawyers’ Weekly – January 26, 2016 | Click here for the full article (password required).


“Va. murder trial may become part of national debate on jail informants”: Haywood’s ‘Litigation Toolbox’ Used to Challenge Snitches in Prince William Capital Case

Washington Post – Feb. 3, 2016 | Click here for the full article.


SFH Partner Brad Haywood Plans “Rare” Involuntary Intoxication Defense in “Lawyer Attack” Case

Fox5/Associated Press – Jan. 7, 2016 | Click here for the full article.


Haywood Pursues Innovative Defense in High-Profile Law Partner Home Invasion Case

NBC – Jan. 6, 2016 | Click here for the full article.


Sheldon to Seek Post-Conviction Relief for George Huguely

The Daily Progress (Charlottesville, VA) – December 18, 2015 | Click here for the full article.


Flood Profiled in New York Times Article on ISIS and Social Media

New York Times – December 8, 2015 | Click here for the full article.


Brad Haywood, Joe Flood Negotiate Resolution in Commonwealth v. Michael Gardner

Falls Church News Press – September 24, 2015 | Click here for the full article.


Sheldon Urges U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit to Overturn Death Row Inmate’s Sentence

Virginia Lawyers’ Weekly – September 15, 2015 | Click here for the full article (password required).


Sheldon Assists 81-Year-Old Inmate Claiming Wrongdoing in Failed Bid for his Release

Richmond Times-Dispatch – June 17, 2015 | Click here for the full article.


Joseph Flood Negotiates Resolution for Northern Virginia Teen on Terror-Related Charge

Daily Progress/Associated Press – June 11, 2015 | Click here for the full article.


Joseph Flood Cites Importance of Mitigating Evidence in Federal Terrorism Case

CBS News/Associated Press and ABC News – June 11, 2015 | Click here for full article [CBS/AP]Click here for full article [ABC].


SFH Client Tony Sharpe Offers Heartfelt Apology, Receives 25 years in Berryville, VA Capital Murder Case

WHAG – April 2, 2015 | Click here for the full article.


NBCNews Reporter Tamron Hall Speaks with Jon Sheldon about the Boston Bomber Trial

NBC News: “News Nation with Tamron Hall” – March 2015 | Click here for the full article.


Sheldon Quoted on Nationwide Strategies Challenging Inhumane Conditions

Virginia Lawyers’ Weekly/Associated Press – October 27, 2014 | Click here for the full article.


Realizing ‘Last Wishes’ of an Exonerated Man

Richmond Times-Dispatch – October 7, 2014 | Click here for the full article.


Insanity Acquittal Secured by Joseph Flood Receives Broad Media Coverage

Various – September 5, 2014 | Click here for the full articles.


Recent Botched Executions Bolster Eighth Amendment Claims According to SFH Partner Jon Sheldon

Roanoke Times – July 25, 2014 | Click here for the full article.


Sheldon Secures Competency Evaluation in Notable Capital Case

Roanoke Times – July 19, 2014 | Click here for the full article.


Sheldon: Courts are Now Catching Up with the Unfair and Incorrect Strategies of Prosecutors

New York Times – May 30, 2014 | Click here for the full article.


In Va., Supreme Court Decision on Intellectual Disabilities Could Aid Two on Death Row

Washington Post – May 28, 2014 | Click here for the full article.


Sheldon Criticizes Virginia’s Use of Solitary Confinement

The Roanoke Times/Associated Press – Mar. 25, 2014 | Click here for the full article.


Noting his Criminal Defense Experience Nationwide, Virginia Lawyers Weekly Quotes Sheldon on Need to Object and Preserve Clients’ Rights

Virginia Lawyers Weekly – Mar. 9, 2014 | Click here for the full article.


Jon Sheldon Criticizes Virginia’s Execution Protocol As State Faces Shortage of Lethal Injection Drugs

Richmond Times Dispatch – Feb. 2014 | Click here for the full article.


SFH Partner Joseph Flood Negotiates Agreement to Withdraw Death Penalty in Commonwealth v. Riddick

Culpeper Star Exponent – Dec. 2013 | Click here for the full article.


Sheldon, Flood & Haywood Resolve Capital Murder Case Favorably for Client

Winchester Star – Aug. 2013 | Click here for the full article.


Attorney Sheldon Discusses Defending Difficult Murder Cases

CBS News – April 2013 | Click here for the full article.


SFH Partner Brad Haywood Reaches Favorable Result in Serious Child Sexual Abuse Case

On February 19, 2013, partner Brad Haywood represented a Waynesboro man charged with 23 counts of child sexual abuse against 4 victims over a period of more than 25 years. Mr. Haywood facilitated a favorable plea that called for a 15 year prison term, a sentence below the low-end of his guidelines, that allows for parole eligibility after 9 years. NBC29 February 2013 | Click here for the full article.


The Exoneration of Bennett Barbour

Sheldon launched this crusade to notify as many innocent men as possible because, in his view neither Virginia’s crime lab nor its prosecutors’ office is taking the task seriously. Slate – March 2012 | Click here for the full article.


Va. Forensic Officials Limit Access to New DNA Evidence

“The stigma of a violent felony conviction can live on with parents, children and spouses, and the opportunity to rectify a clear wrong should be taken.” Said SFH attorney Jon Sheldon. Richmond Times-Dispatch – Feb 2012 | Click here for the full article.


Case of Innocent Man Raises Question of State’s Efforts

Barbour called the Times-Dispatch after he was contacted by Jon Sheldon, a volunteer lawyer who was asked by the Department of Forensic Science to help track down 29 convicted felons whose DNA was not found in tested biological evidence. Richmond Times Dispatch – Feb. 2012 | Click here for the full article.


Roy Pleads Guilty to 2001 Murder

“We’ll reserve most of what we’ll say until sentencing, but Mr. Roy took responsibility for his role in the crime today,” said SFH attorney Joe Flood. Loudoun Times – Jan. 2012 | Click here for the full article.


Judge Recuses Himself from Capital Murder Case

Loudoun Times – Jan. 2012 | Click here for the full article.


My First Time…Witnessing a Client’s Execution

The Washingtonian – Oct. 2011 | Click here for the full article.


Last meal: What’s the Point of this Death Row Ritual?

“The last meal is intended not to comfort the condemned but to soften for society the harsh fact that a human is about to be killed with the law’s full sanction,” says SFH attorney Jon Sheldon. BBC – Sept. 2011 | Click here for the full article.


Virginia Reevaluates DNA evidence in 375 cases

Connell’s review of the previous tests in the Bowman case heightened his skepticism about the new analytical approach the state plans to use. Washington Post – July 2011 | Click here for the full article.


Castaneda Avoids Death Sentence

Joe Flood client Alejandors Castaneda faced a possible death sentence for the 2008 brutal slayings of five men. Instead, he pled guilty in exchange for a parole eligible life sentence. Birmingham News – May 2011 | Click here for the full article.


Sanchez Avoids Death Sentence

“What I did was wrong. I am sorry and I apologize for what I did,” said SFH client Randy Sanchez. WHSV.com – April 2011 | Click here for the full article.


Capital Murder Trial to Start in October

Robert Roy will be defended by SFH attorney Joseph T. Flood. LoudonTimes.com – April 2011 | Click here for the full article.


Burke Avoids Death Sentence

“I’m responsible for Jimmy’s death. I’m sorry I put the family through so much sadness,” said SFH client Julian Burke. Fredricksburg.com– Feb. 2011 | Click here for the full article.


Death Row Inmate Found Incompetent, Sent for Further Treatment

Connell said: “He can’t form a sentence that’s rational. He’s not only mentally retarded, he’s also severely mentally ill. Northern Virginia Daily – Jan. 2011 | Click here for the full article.


Cruel and Usual: Is Lethal Injection Quick and Painless?

Lead author Teresa Zimmers discusses her and Sheldon’s 2007 PLOS paper and its relevance to the current debate over using sodium thiopental in executions. Scientific American – Oct. 2010 | Click here for the full article.


Herndon Man who Strangled Wife, Put Body in Suitcase Sentenced to 7 Years

As Joseph Flood and James Connell began meeting with Kuhne in jail and unspooling his life story, they felt that something wasn’t quite right. Washington Post – Oct. 2010 | Click here for the full article.


Crossroads: The Scheduled Execution of Teresa Lewis

In studio guests include Jon Sheldon, attorney who represented John Muhammad and board president of Virginians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty. Pacifica Radio – Sept. 2010


Man Released After Being Wrongly Imprisoned for Capital Murder

Following his release from the Palm Beach County Jail, Gomez said he is focused on resuming work, “I have to start over again,” he says [SFH Attorney Flood, hired by the Mexican government, consulted with Gomez’s attorneys on the case and helped prove the mistaken ID]. Palm Beach Post – Aug. 2010 | Click here for the full article.


Beltway Sniper Claims More Shootings, Co-conspirators

Defense Attorney Jonathan Sheldon, who represented Muhammad, said: “I think this is sort of a ratings thing. Were there other people who knew of these shootings and were supporting them in some ways? I think it’s just really, really highly unlikely.” Baltimore Sun – July 2010 | Click here for the full article.


Death Row Inmate’s Lawyer Say Behavior “Increasingly Bizarre”

Connell and Sheldon state that recordings of their client “overwhelmingly” demonstrate the man’s mental illness.” Northern Virginia Daily – July 2010.


Lawmakers OK Victim Visits with Condemned

Previously, upon being denied a visit, Whoberry said “I was under the impression I had rights [] But I keep finding out I don’t.” Powell’s attorney, Jonathon Sheldon, tried to arrange a meeting, but also was denied.


Slater Receives Parole Eligible Sentence in Capital Case

Flood worked with the victim’s mother and defendant’s mother, who embraced at the sentencing hearing. Northern Virginia Daily – April 2010


Post Reporter Recounts Paul Powell’s Execution

Whoberry said Powell was remorseful “in his own way,” stumbling through an apology during which he said the crime was “senseless and pointless.” Washington Post – March 2010 | Click here for the full article.


Powell Apologizes to Murder Victim’s Family

Lorraine Whoberry’s call with Powell was made in Sheldon’s Fairfax County office and was attended by Kristie and other family members. Richmond Times-Dispatch – March 2010


SFH Seeks Clemency for Paul Powell

SFH cite conflict of interest in request. Associated Press – March 2010


Mother of Victim Seeks Time with Powell Before His Execution

“We’re not asking them to advocate for Paul in any way, but I do think it’s good for him, it’s good for them, it’s good for everybody,” Sheldon said. Richmond Times-Dispatch – Feb. 2010


U.S. Supreme Court Clears Way for Powell Execution

Virginia is preparing to execute Powell based on indisputably false information about his prior criminal record, including at least two prior convictions for capital murders Powell did not commit. Associated Press – Jan. 2010


SFH Lawyers Revive Mental Retardation Claim

“He constantly talks about things that have no basis in reality” explained Connell. Boston Herald – Jan. 2010


SFH Lawyers See Muhammad’s Humanity

“Tonight, both [SFH] lawyers will be at Virginia’s death house.” Washington Post – Nov. 2009 | Click here for the full article.


Photograph: Sheldon and Greenspun

The lawyers react to the execution of their client. Time Magazine – Nov. 2009 | Click here for photograph.


Video: Sheldon Explains Why Muhammad Should not be Executed on ABC Affiliate 8WRIC

8WRIC News – Nov. 2009


Video: Sheldon Explains Muhammad’s Severe Mental Illness on CBS affiliate WUSA9

Sheldon states “you can’t fake a brain malformation in an MRI”. WUSA9 News – Nov. 2009 | Click here for the full story.


SFH Asks Supreme Court to Stay Muhammad’s Execution

SFH: Muhammad shouldn’t have been allowed to represent himself. Washington Post – Nov. 2009 | Click here for the full article.


SFH Appeals for Clemency

Sheldon says execution not justified because of “severe mental illness.” New York Times – Oct. 2009 | Click here for the full article.


Governor Comments on Upcoming “Sniper” Execution

Sheldon notes that the death sentence was affirmed on a technicality. New York Times – Sept. 2009


Execution Date set for “Sniper”

SFH will ask for clemency as well as appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. CNN – Sept. 2009 | Click here for the full story.


Court Bans Cameras from Courtroom in Capital Case

Seen “in shackles and a jail uniform, it would undermine his right to a fair trial” Flood said. Northern Virginia Daily – Sept. 2009


Ethics Case Against Top State Appeals Lawyer Thrown Out

Sheldon, others, find decision hard to understand; AG will apparently change its behavior. Washington Post – Aug. 2009 | Click here for the full article.


SFH Plans to Appeal “Sniper” Case to the U.S. Supreme Court

“Virginia has the shortest average time from conviction to execution, about six years, compared to Texas, 12 years, and California, 18 years, Mr. Sheldon said.” New York Times – Aug. 2009 | Click here for the full article.


Connell Listed among Virginia’s “Super Lawyers” Again in 2009

Super Lawyers – Aug. 2009 | Click here for the full article.


U.S. Supreme Court Stops Execution in Powell Case

In rare move, courts decide in September whether to take the case says Sheldon. Virginia Lawyers Weekly – July 2009


Connell Obtains Plea in “Erotic Services Killing” with No Jail Time

“It was not easy for either side to agree to the compromise, but it was the best resolution, “said Donaldson’s attorney, James G. Connell III. Washington Post – July 2009 | Click here for the full article.


Sheldon Criticizes Virginia’s Fast Track to Executions

Sheldon, an attorney for convicted killer Paul Powell said Virginia doesn’t follow the rules when it comes to executions. Inside Nova – July 2009


Inmates Choose Electric Chair over Lethal Injecton

Sheldon explains that inmates have distrust of the government, fear they will be suffocated to death. Richmond Times-Dispatch – July 2009


Flood Wins Ruling Precluding Evidence of Torture in Capital Case

Victory almost assures Mr. Montgomery will not face the death penalty. Fredericksburg News – June 2009 | Click here for the full article.


Disciplinary Charges Filed Against Lawyer in AG’s Office

Sheldon characterized the Government Attorney’s testimony as, “misstating the law to gain a tactical advantage in a hearing.” Virginia Lawyers Weekly – June 2009 | Click here for the full article.


Federal Appeals Court Strikes Government Brief in “Sniper” Case

“I am shocked that it happened in this case. I expect more care and professionalism by the attorney general in a death-penalty case” stated Sheldon. Richmond Times-Dispatch – April 2009


U.S. Supreme Court Stops Execution, Grants Review in Bell Case

Connell points out anomaly in the law between federal/state courts. Washington Post – 2008 | Click here for the full article.


Connell & Flood Obtain Dismissal of Capital Murder Charges

Prosecutor suspends capital-murder charge against death-row inmate in slaying Culpeper woman. Fredericksburg News – 2008 | Click here for the full article.


SFH Fights Sniper Death Sentence

Lawyers Argue Muhammad had Mitigating Factors. Washington Post – 2008 | Click here for the full article.


Truck Driver Who Killed Three Convicted of a Traffic Infraction

“Mac is devastated over what happened” explained Devine, “he doesn’t drive commercial vehicles anymore…and will never forget what he saw that night as he tried to get those people out of that Volvo.” Washington Post – 2008 | Click here for the full article.


Sheldon Discusses Lethal Injection on ReachMD

ReachMD – 2007 | Click here for the full story.


Medical Researchers & SFH Attorney Raise New Questions about Lethal Injection

University of Miami School of Medicine – 2007 | Click here for the full article.


“Challenging Lethal Injection”: Complex, Secretive Execution Process Raises Troubling Questions

University of Miami School of Medicine – 2007 | Click here for the full article.


Judge Hands “Cell Phone” Bank Robber a Scolding

“I think Mr. Williams honestly felt that he wasn’t going to survive,” Devine said.

Washington Post – 2006


Attack on Lethal Injection Advances in Reaction to Lancet Article

U.S. courts around the nation began wrestling with the issue on the basis of last year’s study in the Lancet authored in part by Sheldon.

The New York Times – 2006 | Click here for the full article.


Devine Wins Acquittal in N. Va. Slaying

Women Charged with killing “Bread Lady” found “not guilty” by jury. Washington Post – 2006


SFH Attorneys No Strangers to High-Profile Cases

Connell and Sheldon, Lawyers for Bell, have other “notorious” clients in Virginia courts. Northern Virginia Daily – 2005


Connell Wins Plea to End Abduction Trial

Deal lowers sentence to time served for man initially charged with several killings. Washington Post – 2005 | Click here for the full article.


Study in the Lancet Questions Whether Lethal Injection Humane

“Our society long ago rejected the unnecessary infliction of pain in execution” said Sheldon, one of the authors. Washington Times – 2005


Connell Shows When Rape Is in Question, So are Nurses’ Answers

Connell Succeeds in Limiting Expert Testimony in Ground Breaking Case. Washington Post – 2001


SFH Fights Government Stonewalling and Secrecy

Discovering they can’t get basic info, Attorneys Devine & Connell go to extremes. Legal Times – 2000.