Edward P. Moriarity
Birth Date: August 21, 1941
Birth Place: Butte, Montana
Preparatory Education: Carroll College (B.A., 1963)
Legal Education: University of Wyoming (J.D., 1970)
Speaker & Teacher: I have given presentations and speeches to numerous legal associations in Wyoming, Montana, Utah, and Idaho, and have been a teacher at the Trial Lawyers College in Dubois, Wyoming and at the Wyoming Trial School at the University of Wyoming in Laramie, Wyoming.
I am happy to share my long experience in trial law with others and enjoy sharing what knowledge I have acquired over my long career.
Family: Married; 7 children and 10 grandchildren
Brief Description of the Legal Career of Edward P. Moriarity
I graduated from the University of Wyoming School of Law in 1970, was admitted to practice in 1970, and have been a practicing attorney ever since. I began my legal career in Cheyenne, Wyoming with the firm of McClintock, Mai and Urbigkit in 1970, was named a partner in 1971, and practiced with that firm until 1974 when I moved to Casper, Wyoming to work with Robert Rose and Gerry Spence. Shortly thereafter Judge Rose was named to the Wyoming Supreme Court, and the firm of Spence and Moriarity was born. In 1978 we moved the firm to Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and the name was changed to Spence, Moriarity & Schuster and subsequently to Spence, Moriarity & Shockey. I had the honor of being the partner of Gerry Spence for over 30 years.
In 2004 I became the head of the present firm of Moriarity, Badaruddin & Booke, LLC, taking over the Spence, Moriarity & Shockey practice in Salt Lake City, Utah and adding additional offices in Wilson, Wyoming; Cheyenne, Wyoming; Three Forks, Montana; and Missoula, Montana.
Some of the cases in which I have been involved throughout these many years of practicing law and of which I am very proud are as follows:
I have been involved in many murder cases, several of which were death penalty cases, and none of my clients have suffered the ultimate punishment.
I had the honor of working with my partner Gerry Spence on the defense of Imelda Marcos, one of the more interesting and historic cases ever tried.
Gerry and I were invited and honored to go to London, England to conduct a mock trial of Lee Harvey Oswald with the prosecutor being Vincent Bugliosi, the prosecutor of Charles Manson. In the mock trial, we were allowed to use the actual exhibits from the Kennedy assassination, and the witnesses who testified were the actual witnesses to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. I still have, and will always have, a vivid memory of the incredible feeling of holding the actual gun that killed President Kennedy.
In my early years, I did a lot of criminal work and enjoyed the day to day/hand to hand combat in the courts dealing with preliminary hearings, motions, and finally the jury trial. Now, I always like to have a couple of criminal matters in process because I know that most criminal cases, unlike civil cases, are resolved by a jury.
I had the honor and privilege of trying many cases with Gerry Spence and was with him during most of his most famous cases:
As I stated, I was very lucky to be Gerry’s partner and second chair for many cases. I learned how a great man thinks, and most importantly, I learned how a great man works. I have been taught that the key to representing people is hard work and preparation. Gerry has taught me, along with many other things, that hard work, long hours, preparation, and not leaving a stone unturned is the best and only way you can represent a client. If a client is willing to entrust you as a lawyer with his case, then you must be willing and able to do the very best job you can for that client.
Over the years I have also had the honor of representing many clients in cases in which Gerry was not the lead lawyer. In 1984, I achieved the largest wrongful death punitive damage verdict in Arizona, which was a record at that time. The jury awarded over $6,000,000 for the wrongful death of a beautiful young woman who was murdered by a person wearing a hotel uniform whom she let into her motel room. The case was important because it led to standards imposed by the hotel industry on its innkeepers that required guards on the doors so they could not be forced open but only open slightly, new key systems, and keeping a person’s room number secret.
I also developed a special interest and expertise in trucking cases; i.e. cases involving semis and other big vehicles regulated by the United States Department of Transportation (DOT). I have settled many trucking cases for figures far in excess of one million dollars. One case prior to the confidentiality clause involved a man driving a flat bed one-ton truck who was hit in the rear corner by a semi-truck driven by an unqualified driver who had a drug history. The driver should never have been hired, yet he was placed on the highways of America totally unqualified with a thirty-ton rig capable of injuring and killing many innocent people. The case settled for the policy limits of five million dollars. Since that time, I have prepared and ultimately settled many cases for a lot of money. Consequently, I am proud that I have helped make the highways of America safer for all of us.
In today's world of trial practice, most settlements are covered by what is known as a confidentiality clause. The amount of the settlement cannot be made public since this is something that most insurance companies do not want the public to know and discuss. Since we, as representatives for our clients, have to do what is best for the client, we must agree to confidentiality clauses in order to attain the best possible result. I have been involved in well over one hundred cases that have settled for over $100,000. I have been involved in over thirty cases that have settled for over a $1,000,000. I have been involved in over ten cases that have settled for over $20,000,000 and a few for over $100,000,000.
Some Examples of Million Dollar Plus Confidential Settlements
There have been several other civil cases that have resulted in confidential settlements in cases involving many other issues, including police brutality, discrimination, workplace injuries, oil field injuries, automobile accidents, motorcycle cases, malpractice cases, crane cases, and other cases dealing with heavy equipment. In all of our cases we have attempted to represent the little guy against the harm caused by corporate America.
Some Other Criminal Defense Cases of Note
Defense of Frederick Tokars in re: State of Georgia vs. Frederick Tokars featured live on Court TV.
My long time partner Gerry Spence and I also successfully defended Imelda Marcos.Defense of an insurance agent in Idaho who was charged with fraud, forgery, RICO,
inter alia - in 164 predicate acts. My client was not convicted on any of the charges.