Facing Criminal Charges? You Need An Attorney
With Over 35 Years Of Experience.

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Rae Shearn

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Practice Areas:

  • Criminal Defense



Attorney Rae Shearn is a nationally recognized Miami-Dade criminal defense lawyer who has consistently earned among the most prestigious honors in the legal community. This includes being selected for the National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 Trial Lawyers (2021), AV Rating by peers Premier, Awarded several times from CPA Today writing awards for excellence by CPA Today. With a decade of experience as a former felony chief litigator selected by Janet Reno and appointed to supervise other prosecutors at the Miami Dade State Attorney Office. She was selected to lead in Miami drug trafficking and narcotic special division trials. Rae Shearn was cross designated in Southern District Court in narcotics special prosecutions. She has successfully defended criminal preindictment tax investigations showing the government that charges were not appropriate since 1997. As a former Felony Division Chief at the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office, Rae Shearn knows both sides of the court and has a unique perspective on the justice system. When facing life-changing criminal charges, don't risk fighting on your own.

Rae Shearn is a skilled criminal defense attorney who has an established and highly successful criminal defense trial practice in South Florida and across the United States.

Prior to entering private practice, Ms. Shearn was a Clerk for a Southern District Magistrate in Federal Court. She was selected by Janet Reno as Felony Division Chief Assistant State Attorney in Miami-Dade County where she was among the first to direct 1980's complex high profile narcotics investigations and trial cases, pharmacy investigations, was selected to make the determination of death investigations including police shootings. Rae Shearn was the decision making Attorney at the investigation, prearrest stage and charging. She was a decision maker on whether to seek the death penalty on behalf of the Office of Janet Reno.

Rae Shearn has directed investigations across Columbia, Mexico, South America, U.K. and the United States with ties to Miami Dade. She was selected and cross designated in the United States in late 1980's for narcotic boat cases, airplane cases, and airport cases in the Southern District of the United States of America.

She was trusted with Executive Prosecutorial Assignments in other Florida Counties.

Rae Shearn, an influential lawyer who was an Assistant State Attorney during racially charged police shootings in an era of riots in Miami and reported directly to Janet Reno during her tenure as Miami Dade State Attorney. She is knowledgeable in original target investigations, grand jury preparation, wire taping, cell phone data and tracing with or without GPS tracking and all other forms of law enforcement surveillance and intelligence gathering.

Those skills translate into building a solid defense.

She tried the first known Miami Dade trial based upon DNA identification in a capital sex battery case in Miami Dade County. She tried to verdict the first Miami Dade underlying felony and first time use of the underlying felony of child abuse of an infant in first degree murder, a death penalty enabled litigation.

She supervised police narcotic confidential informants, assisted in setting protocol, and spearheaded black lists for miscreant informants. Rae Shearn formed the legal team strategy for planned locations on police undercover operations, and was part of the team to set the Miami State Attorney protocol standard for large intricate reverse sting operations.

Rae Shearn was part of the Janet Reno team to set up the first and now highly successful Miami Dade Pretrial Division Program. She was requested to set the Miami Dade standards to teach other attorneys including prosecutors to distinguish between dealers and drug dependent individuals for much needed treatment instead of punishment, and she was asked to set up eligibility standards for the unique and now established first Drug Court in the United States. She assisted in the set-up Miami Dade Sexual Battery Pretrial Intervention Program where a first offender meeting criteria is able to complete the program and have the original charges dropped.

She has experience in trial on misdemeanor crimes, DUI Manslaughter, Manslaughter, Trafficking Narcotics. Sexual Battery, to special indictments for first-degree intent and underlying felony murder cases including death penalty cases. She has extensive courtroom experience, including over 200 trials. Rae Shearn handles all state and federal criminal cases. She investigated police and law enforcement officers with the decision of whether to charge or not prior to Miami Riots and passionate, and she is experienced in handling every type of felony and misdemeanor charges.

Her exemplary public service is a testament to her selfless approach continuing throughout her continuing distinguished professional career, "Wherever she works, Rae is recognized as a ‘lawyer's lawyer,' that is, she is known both for her keen intellect and for her ability to offer practical solutions to complex problems."

To learn more about receiving Attorney Rae Shearn's outstanding representation for your case in Miami-Dade, contact her today.


  • Nova Southeastern University, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
    • J.D. - 1986
  • Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida
    • B.F.A. - 1981

Bar Admission

  • Florida, 1987
  • U.S. District Court, 1987
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of Florida, 1987
  • U.S. District Court Middle District of Florida, 1987
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 11th Circuit, 1987
  • United States Supreme Court, 2009


  • Elected by Miami Dade lawyers to the Board of Directors for Florida Association Criminal Defense Attorneys 2019-2021
  • Florida CPA Today Editorial Committee Award for Writing Excellence
  • Pro Bono Service recognition for Women in Distress 1997-1998
  • Adjunct Professor Negotiation Competition Award, 1997-1998
  • Recipient of Nova Law Center Alumni Award
  • Goodwin Scholar Award 2nd and 3rd years
  • Recipient of Arthur Goldberg Award, 1985-1986
  • Executive Board on Miami Florida Association of Defense Attorneys- 2022. as Executive Board
  • AV Top Rating by Peers Preeminent

Classes and Seminars

  • National Institute for Trial Advovacy, Notre Dame University, Nova Southeastern Law School, 1998 to 2019
  • Adjunct Faculty for Intensive Trial Advocacy, Florida Professor Dobson gathered talented willing Adjuncts to teach an extraordinarily high intensity trial advocacy in seven days. , Nova Southeastern Law School, 1997 to 2020
  • Adjunct Faculty Law and Criminal Justice, Women in Law; Juvenile Law; selected textbook, created curriculum, unique syllabus with in-person weekly demonstrations consistent with interactional lectures., St. Thomas University, 1996 to 1998
  • Taught Trial Advocacy Seminars at the University of Miami for Assistant State Attorneys and Assistant Public Defenders, University of Miami School of Law, 1992 to 1993
  • Lecturer in Criminal Justice master courses: Judicial Policy Making; Introduction to Criminal Justice; Women in Law; CTP Transitions Program for Life, a master course for inmates who may legally be released., Florida International University, 1990 to 2020

Published Works

  • “CPA- Client Confidentiality. The New Federal Privilege”, Florida CPA Today, November, 1999
  • “CPA-Client Confidentiality. The New Federal Privilege”, The Society of Louisiana Certified Public Accountants, January/February, 2000

Past Positions

  • Private Litigation Practice, 1997 to 2022
  • State Attorney Office of Janet Reno, Assistant State Attorney, Division Chief, Special Division - Narcotics, 1986 to 1994
  • Federal Magistrate Peter L. Nimcoff, Law Clerk, 1985 to 1987
  • Neil Chonin, J.D., Law Clerk, 1984 to 1985

Professional Associations

  • Miami, FACDL, Life Member
  • Miami Dade County Bar Member of Criminal Law
  • Founding Member of League of Prosecutors 2002-2021
  • Florida Bar Mentor 2017-2021
  • Public Relations Officer for Florida Association of Women Lawyers, 1984-1986
  • Justice on Honor Court, 1984-1985
  • Chief Justice of Honor Court, 1985-1986
  • National Brooklyn Evidence Moot Court Team, 1985-1986
  • Legal Counsel for Florida AFL-CIO and FLARA for G8
  • Legal Counsel for National Alpha Phi Sigma Honor Society at Florida International University

Current Employment Position

  • Attorney