Harry S. Stern is the Rains Lucia Stern St. Phalle & Silver, PC (“RLS”) managing principal. His practice is focused on civil litigation and criminal defense as well as complex administrative matters.
Harry has successfully defended peace officers in a number of high-profile trials. Harry has also represented college and professional athletes, candidates for elected office and other prominent people in civil and criminal actions in both federal and state court. He regularly represents peace officers in internal investigations, administrative hearings, coroner’s inquests, grand jury proceedings and related court actions.
A sample of Harry’s recent noteworthy cases include:
- Obtaining what the San Francisco Chronicle described as the largest settlement in recent memory against S.F. Muni for the death of Oakland Tribune reporter Bill Brand.
- Securing acquittal of former Fresno police officer facing federal criminal civil rights charges after lengthy jury trial.
- Successfully defending key member of Oracle Team USA charged with gross rule violations in trial before International Sailing Jury days before the start of the America’s Cup finals.
- Attaining complete dismissal of federal civil rights action against an Oakland police officer via pre-trial motions.
- Co-head of litigation team that secured major settlement on behalf of Berkeley balcony case victim as well as lobbying for legislation that helps improve residential balcony safety.
- Won dismissal of all criminal charges against San Francisco deputy sheriffs after discovering serious due process violations by the prosecution.
- Winning total exoneration for a San Francisco Deputy Sheriff charged with multiple felonies including obtaining the leading published decision regarding Assault Under Color of Authority. (People V. Lewelling (2017) 26.Cal.App.5th 276)
- Securing full acquittal for Sonoma County Deputy Sheriff charged with homicide and assault under color of authority.
Harry teaches classes and seminars on a broad range of topics related to police legal issues. He is often interviewed on television, the radio and in print media regarding his cases and about law enforcement matters.
Prior to becoming an attorney, Harry was a police officer with the City of Berkeley and was a member of the Berkeley Police Association’s Board of Directors. Harry graduated from the University of California at Berkeley with a degree in English Literature. He earned his law degree from the University of San Francisco while working full-time as a police officer. He also attended Chicago’s Loyola University School of Law as a visiting student, where he earned two academic achievement awards and worked at the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in the criminal appeals division. He has also served on the University of California’s Civilian Police Review Board. Harry was admitted to practice law in California in 1995 and is also admitted to practice in the Northern, Eastern, Southern and Central Districts of the Federal Courts of California and the Federal District Court of Colorado, as well as the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Disclaimer: Any results set forth herein are based upon the facts of that particular case and do not represent a promise or guarantee.
• B.A., University of California, Berkeley
• J.D., University of San Francisco