"I do this work with compassion,
understanding and sympathy."
~Jimmy Sheets

A message from Jimmy Sheets

Hi. I am attorney James Sheets and I am a Judicial candidate for the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas. With nine seats open, it is an exciting time for tangible change so please, I encourage everyone to VOTE May 18th!

I am primarily a trial attorney, currently in private practice in the city of Pittsburgh. I represent citizens faced with losing their liberty, all needing competent and diligent assistance navigating the legal system. In twenty plus years of working in the courthouse, I have learned, for the most part, good people make bad choices.  I have seen the very worst and the utmost best in my fellow citizens; defendants, victims, lawyers, and judges alike. 

I believe in people. My career has been about building strong relationships with my clients, fellow attorneys, peers, prosecutors, Jurists, victim advocates, witnesses, court staff, probation and police officers.  I have developed these relationships by demonstrating a willingness to be candid. It is in my practice of the law to zealously protect the rights of the accused without attacking victims. I negotiate resolutions that often do not include incarceration, offering the court, the district attorney, the victim and my client a resolution that makes all parties comfortable going forward.

Hand in hand with the criminal court system comes loss of family, loved ones, housing and employment. This is not lost on me. The system is not perfect; institutional racism, lack of education and opportunity, discrimination, all conspire to corrupt a judicial system heralded around the world. A system that has existed as a foundation of our citizen’s rights for over 200 years.   I believe a comprehensive understanding of people, knowledge of the law and the importance of the role a jurist plays, coupled with experience in the courtroom are all paramount to presiding as a Judge.

People have asked me throughout my career, “how I can represent murders, drug dealers, child molesters and rapists? How can I defend people accused of such heinous crimes?”

My response is unwavering. I represent the constitutional ideal that everyone is equal and entitled to a fair trial. Everyone! Not some, not only those who can pay, not just victimless crimes or those who commit minor offenses… I mean everyone is entitled to a fair trial. Without a firm and comprehensive belief in this fundamental ideal where would we all stand? 

As a trial attorney, I do this work because I believe in the law. I do this work without a callous heart. I do this work with compassion, understanding and sympathy.

In the words of Hunter S. Thompson “Going to trial with a lawyer that considers your whole lifestyle a crime-in-progress is a not a happy prospect.” 

I look people in the eye, I shake their hands, I am candid, I am approachable and I am always here to help and serve. 

If elected I would carry these principles to the bench.  It would be an honor to earn your vote May 18th.