We Have a Stellar Record of Success! Paul Looney has tried 60 Criminal Defense Jury Trials since 1995 with Zero Final Convictions.
We have a high success rate of preventing criminal accusations from turning into formal charges as well as shutting down criminal investigations. We are able to do this because we move quickly and work consistently. We are different from other criminal defense law firms because of the stellar record of success of Paul Looney, trial attorney.
Mr. Looney has tried 60 criminal defense jury trials since 1995 with zero final convictions
We Have a History of Winning Trials!
With us on your side, you are not alone. You have effective support throughout the entire process ahead, no matter what charges you face. You deserve the best defense by utilizing a strong offense.
Looney, Smith & Conrad is a Criminal Defense Law Firm with passionate and skilled criminal defense lawyers utilizing the most powerful resources available. We are dedicated to defending the rights of the accused and take pride in fighting for justice. Our criminal attorneys have over 100 years of combined trial knowledge and experience to provide you with the best criminal defense.
Anyone who has been through the justice system, whether for a federal felony or a county misdemeanor, will tell you there is nothing more important than having an experienced criminal lawyer by your side.
Our top priority is being there for you when you need us. We are ready to help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you or a loved one are accused of a crime and the police are investigating, time is of the essence. Every moment counts. Our criminal attorneys know the law surrounding misdemeanors and felonies, and we handle every type of criminal case.
Clay S. Conrad graduated cum laude from college (Franklin-Pierce College in Rindge, New Hampshire) and law school (University of Texas School of Law). But that's not the reason Paul Looney says Clay is the smartest man he knows. "If you have to have somebody at a computer trying to figure out how to win a case, there isn't anybody else I want at my computer."
Bringing over 16 years of appellate, pre-trial litigation and State and Federal criminal defense and related litigation to his clients in Houston, throughout the state of Texas and many states across the nation, Clay represents individuals from all walks of life and all types of social, cultural and financial backgrounds. His experience includes both white-collar and blue-collar cases ranging from State misdemeanors to Federal felonies. He has excellent research and complex pre-trial drafting skills as well as electronic case presentation and criminal and civil forfeiture litigation. Clay has litigated to completion over fifty appeals in numerous Federal and State jurisdictions.
"Before law school, I was a field engineer in the theatrical lighting business. I worked television studios, auditoriums, handled technical support for traveling productions, etc. Now I do appeals and pre-trial litigation so in a very real sense, I still work backstage. It's my job to ensure when we are in trial, all the ducks are in a row. And it takes both of us. It takes Paul's skill in the courtroom and it takes my preparation work. In a very real sense, I still work backstage. That's my role and I like it."
Clay has been instrumental in achieving the high record of success Looney, Smith & Conrad P.C. has in winning cases. His appellate work is thorough and successful. "We had a case fought through a motion to suppress and were denied. We fought it on appeal and it was reversed. Our client is a really big guy with a black belt in Karate serving time in prison. We spoke right after it was reversed and when I told him we won, he broke down crying. That was such a memorable moment because it meant he was going home to his family."
Producing convincing paperwork with outstanding research and writing skills, Clay has many years of experience beginning as a Research Assistant/Editor and Staff Counsel Member of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association in Austin. Clay was the content editor for the membership journal and prepared and edited materials for fourteen continuing legal education seminars annually. He assisted membership with legal research and drafting and represented the Association before the Texas State Bar, Texas Court of Criminal Appeals and the Texas legislature. Analyses of all Texas bills with criminal law ramifications were drafted by Clay before legislative sessions. He also briefed lobbyists and speakers for presentations before legislative committees.
Jury Nullification: The Evolution of a DoctrineSince then, Clay authored the book, Jury Nullification: The Evolution of a Doctrine where he explores the history of trial by jury and the right of jurors to vote "not guilty" if the law is unjust or unjustly applied. The Founding Fathers believed juries in criminal trials had a role to play as the "conscious of the community," and relied on juries' "nullifying" to hold the government to the principles of the Constitution. Clay examines the power of jurors being ignored by American courts to the point that today few jurors are aware that an important part of their role is, in the words of the Supreme Court, to "prevent oppression by the government."
"This is the most important book on the independence of juries since Lysander Spooner's Trial by Jury in 1852. It is meticulously researched and balanced. The enjoyment of reading it stems as much from the beauty of Clay Conrad's writing as from the comprehensiveness of his analysis and the fascinating and important nature of his subject."
–Randy E. Barnett
Austin B. Fletcher Professor of Law, Boston University
Clay is licensed in Texas and has been admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court, several United States Circuit Courts of Appeals and the Eastern District of Michigan as well as the Supreme Court of Texas. He is active in many organizations and has authored many academic, professional and general interest publications. As a frequent lecturer, Clay has spoken on topics throughout the country on the subject of juries.
Clay has made extensive continuing legal education presentations as well as presentations to civic and political associations across the country including in Virginia, California, Texas, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Utah and Washington D.C. He has been the guest of many radio talk shows.
Top Lawyer 2013
Clay has been named a "Top Lawyer" for 2013 and 2014 in the December issue of Houstonia magazine. To compile this year's list, attorneys were rated on a 10-point scale by factoring in peer endorsements as well as experience, education, training, speaking, publishing, and awards.
Proceeding Vaguely: Obstruction of a Pending Proceeding Under 18 U.S.C. 1505 (The Champion - National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, July/August 2014)
Jury Persuasion in Criminal Cases: Utilizing "Solution Selling" Techniques (Voice for the Defense, November 2014)
Paul Looney brings over 29 years of criminal defense law to clients in Houston, throughout the State of Texas and across the nation. A graduate of West Texas State University, he earned degrees in economics and political science and his Doctorate of Jurisprudence from South Texas College of Law. Paul has years of experience trying personal injury and civil cases too.
Paul Looney has won 60 criminal defense trials since 1995 with ZERO final convictions.
Acquired in 1990, Paul is eligible to practice law in the State of Texas. He is also an active out-of-state attorney permitted to practice in the State of Illinois.
In 2015, Paul was awarded the designation of “Fellow” by the Texas Bar Foundation, one of the highest honors bestowed by the Texas Bar. In 2015 he was named “Nation’s TOP ONE Percent” by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel. Also in 2015, he was named one of Houston’s Top Lawyers by H Texas magazine.
In 2014, Paul was named a “Top 100 Trial Lawyer” by the National Trial Lawyers, a premier group of attorneys practicing criminal defense or civil plaintiff law. This honor is extended to those individuals who exemplify superior qualifications, trial results and leadership.
In 2011 Paul was named a “Super Fellow” by the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Education Institute. In 1988 he earned a position on the Dean’s Honor List at South Texas College of Law and the same year was named to the Law Fraternity International, Phi Alpha Delta. In 1978 he was placed on the National Social Science Honor Society, Phi Gamma Mu and the Economics Honor Society, Omicron Delta Upsilon.
From 1996 to present, Paul has been a Trial Lawyer with Looney & Conrad, P.C. Prior to that he was a Trial Lawyer with Lamson & Looney, P.C.
Paul conducts two free legal clinics weekly, one every Thursday at 5:30pm at his Hempstead office and the other every Saturday morning at 8:30am in Bellville. He won an award in conjunction with the Austin and Waller County Bar Associations in 2014 – the Pro Bono Service Award from the State Bar of Texas for the Saturday Free Legal Clinic and several attorneys rotated duty but Paul was almost always there. Eventually he became the only attorney to conduct the clinic in Bellville.
Paul also represented six of the 177 cases from the 2015 Twin Peaks melee in Waco involving several motorcycle clubs and law enforcement in which nine people died and 20 were injured. Paul also assisted in obtaining pro bono attorneys for 13 more of the bikers arrested following the shootout (in addition to the six he took himself).
In 2019, Paul won the prestigious Charles D. Butts Pro Bono Lawyer of the Year award given by the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association for his work with the two free legal clinics as well as his services in the four years following the Twin Peaks melee.
Paul has been an attorney and counselor of law in many different courts including the U.S. District Court, District of Colorado, the United States Tax Court, the Northern District of Texas District Court, the United States Court of Federal Claims, the United States District Court Eastern District of Michigan and the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. Paul is an attorney member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas, the Supreme Court of Texas, Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity International and the Texas Trial Lawyers Association.
Paul was the founding President of the Waller County Bar Association, was an Executive Committee Member of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association (2000), a Board Member of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, Education Institute (1999-2003) and a Board Member of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association (1990-1999). He is currently a member of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association and the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association.
After the tragic death of Sandra Bland in the Waller County, Texas jail in Hempstead, on July 30, 2015, a committee was formed at the request of Waller County Sheriff R. Glenn Smith to observe the inner workings of the Sheriff’s Office and to report on and recommend practices and policies to benefit the Office and the citizens of Waller County. Paul served as a non-voting ex-officio member and formed the five-person committee. The committee went on to recommend practices that not only would benefit the Waller County jail but jails throughout the entire United States.
The July, 2015 issue of the Texas Bar Journal featured Paul in the article, “Way Out Yonder” by Lindsay Stafford Mader, about Texas attorneys making profitable practices in rural communities (featuring Looney & Conrad’s Hempstead office).
“Proceeding Vaguely: Obstruction of a Pending Proceeding Under 18 U.S.C. 1505” published in 2014 by The Champion, the renowned magazine of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.
“Jury Persuasion in Criminal Cases: Utilizing ‘Solution Selling’ Techniques” published in November, 2014 by the Voice, the magazine of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association.
Paul presented, “Jury Persuasion in Criminal Cases: Utilizing ‘Solutions Selling’ Techniques” at the Continuing Education Stanford Law School in 1998.
Raised in Cypress, Texas, Wade is a native of the Houston area and is a graduate of Cy-Fair High School. While in high school, Wade excelled as an athlete for the cross-country and track teams and also participated in the school’s first-ever ‘Student Court’ defending his fellow classmates. Wade went on to attend Texas Tech University and continued his running career with Texas Tech’s cross-country and track teams. As a student-athlete, Wade pursued a degree in political science and minored in history.
After graduating from Texas Tech, Wade returned to Houston to study law at South Texas College of Law. There, he focused his studies on criminal law and trial advocacy, and held internships with the 9th District Court in Montgomery County as a briefing attorney for the judge, and also with the Harris County Public Defender’s Office.
After a second stint as an intern for the Harris County Public Defender’s office and passing the Bar Exam, Wade hung out his shingle and began his law practice, focusing on criminal defense.
Shortly after beginning his law practice, Wade was accepted into a pilot training and mentorship program with the Harris County Public Defender’s Office and was one of only ten young attorneys from Houston selected for the program, where he received specialized training in criminal defense and trial work.
As part of that program, Wade was sent for additional training with a national organization for public defenders; Gideon’s Promise. Gideon’s Promise consisted of an intensive and specialized training program spanning three years, which focused on trial skills and client-centered representation.
Upon learning about the plight of the 177 citizens arrested on May 17, 2015 at Twin Peaks in Waco, Wade became involved by defending one of those people probono and worked the case all the way to dismissal. Wade now continues to practice law in Houston and across Texas, defending the rights of citizens accused every day.
Wade is licensed to practice law in Texas and is a member of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association, Fort Bend County Criminal Defense Attorneys Association, and Gideon’s Promise. On January 1, 2020, he became a shareholder in the law office of Looney, Smith & Conrad, P.C.
Texas Tech University, B.A. (2009)
South Texas College of Law, J.D. (2012)
Gideon’s Promise, Class of 2013
In 2019, Wade earned the designation of "Top 40 Under 40", a prestigious award from the National Trial Lawyer's Association.