Sarena Townsend Esq., Seasoned Civil Rights and Criminal Defense Trial Attorney, Formally Affiliates with FARBER SCHNEIDER FERRARI LLP as Incoming Partner
Ms. Townsends affiliation strengthens the firm's capabilities in criminal defense and employee representation, where she will serve as lead trial partner in all such litigation. Owing to Ms. Townsends partnership with FSF, it continues to achieve recognition as a leading law firm in New York.
Ms. Townsend brings a wealth of experience and amongst her colleagues of the New York bar, carries a reputation for fierce courtroom advocacy. She focuses her practice primarily on criminal defense and prosecuting civil rights violations by state agency employers against employees facing disciplinary actions, or detainees in the custody of the Department of Correction. Ms. Townsend consistently delivered favorable outcomes for her clients and is widely known for her formidable results by prosecuting or defending litigation matters all the way to trial.
Ms. Townsend's impressive track record includes conducting and overseeing numerous hearings and trials, resulting in favorable jury verdicts and settlements. She has successfully defended individuals against a wide range of felony charges and has represented individuals in Sex Offender Registry Act ("SORA") Hearings. Additionally, Ms. Townsend is actively involved with Campaign Zero, an organization dedicated to reducing police violence and enhancing police accountability. She also collaborates with correctional facilities across the nation to develop training programs for their corrections staff.
Between 2016 and 2022, Ms. Townsend served as the Deputy Commissioner of the Intelligence, Investigation & Trials Division at the New York City Department of Correction, where she led the internal affairs and staff discipline units on Rikers Island. In this role, she oversaw thousands of investigations and dozens of trials at the Office of Administrative Trials & Hearings ("OATH"). Her unparalleled knowledge of the inner workings of law enforcement agencies positions her as a formidable litigator in matters involving police and corrections officers.
Before her tenure with the Department of Correction, Ms. Townsend held the position of Deputy Bureau Chief at the Kings County District Attorney's Office, where she prosecuted a wide range of crimes throughout Brooklyn for a decade. Known for her impressive conviction rate, she handled some of the office's most high-profile and complex cases. Specializing in sex crimes prosecutions, including rape and predatory sex assault, Ms. Townsend also secured top count convictions in cold cases, homicide, robbery, burglary, DWI, narcotics, and gun possession matters. She has offered expert testimony on various aspects, including DNA collection and testing, Sexual Assault Evidence Collection Kits, fingerprint lifting and comparison, firearm operability, and chemical analysis of narcotics. Ms. Townsend also played a pivotal role in training and supervising prosecutors in the busiest trial bureau in the County.
Ms. Townsend's influence extends beyond her legal practice. She was recognized in City & State's 2023 Law Power 100, a prestigious list acknowledging "the most influential legal professionals in the world of New York politics and government." Her insights have been featured and quoted in various media outlets, including television, radio, podcasts, and print, such as Dateline, VICE News, NBC, NY1, New York Times, Forbes, New York Magazine, Daily News, Hell Gate, Gothamist, and The City.
Ms. Townsend earned her J.D. from Fordham University School of Law in 2006 and graduated with honors from New York University in 2003, with a B.A. in Psychology.
FSF immediately recognized Ms. Townsends value to its growing clientele, and is proud to have such a quality advocate as firm partner. FSF looks forward to the continued excellence and dedication Ms. Townsend brings to their legal team. Ms. Townsends knowledge and experience is expected to be a substantial force multiplier in providing valuable counsel to both business and individual clients.
Farber Schneider Ferrari LLP is located at 261 Madison Avenue, 26th floor, New York, NY 10016, a short walk from Grand Central Station in midtown Manhattan. FSF is a prominent law firm in New York City focused on a wide range of legal solutions across transactions and litigation in various areas.
FARBER SCHNEIDER FERRARI LLP
Michael Farber Esq.
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