After working as an assistant district attorney for two years, Tyrone St. Junior already has handled serious felonies, including attempted homicides.
But they aren’t a highlight.
Rather, St. Junior is most proud of his work on a misdemeanor, in which a defendant ultimately pled guilty after defrauding a woman out of money she’d paid him to fix her roof.
“After the case was closed, she sent me a very nice letter, thanking me for taking the time out to talk to her and be courteous,” he recalled, noting that he treasures that card — something prosecutors rarely receive.
Prosecution is not about incarcerating “bad people,” but doing justice, St. Junior said.
“There are a lot of people out there who need help,” he said. “There are some people who prey on other people, and there are some who really just need a hand up, who are in a bad circumstance.”
St. Junior saw such circumstances firsthand when Hurricane Katrina hit just after he graduated from Loyola University in his hometown of New Orleans.
The experience changed St. Junior. He put his law-school plans on hold and took a job with the Army Corps of Engineers to help rebuild the city, working 12-hour days, seven days a week, for two years straight.
What was your most useful law school course?
Evidence, with Greg O’Meara. By a mile
What is the best part of being an attorney?
This might sound cliché. But for me, it really is the ability to make a difference in the community, at a very grassroots level.
If you hadn’t become a lawyer, what would you have done?
I probably would’ve majored in English, gotten a Ph.D. in literature, and tried to write or teach.
What would you never wear?
A pink shirt. It just doesn’t look good on me.
What can you spend hours doing that’s not law-related?
Reading, and playing video games with my brother is my vice
What famous person you would most like to have a drink with?
What is your favorite thing to do in Wisconsin?
Eating. Wisconsin has the freshest beef of anywhere I’ve ever been. Stack’d, downtown, is probably my favorite restaurant. It was on the Food Network.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
Despite what I do all day long, off the job I’m actually pretty shy. I’d like to be more extroverted.
What is your greatest fear?
Not knowing the answer. As I get older, I realize that you can’t know everything. But I just hate being in the position of not knowing something I should know.
What is the first concert you went to?
Frankie Beverly and Maze at the Essence Music Festival. I’ve seen them probably four or five times since, and they put on the best live show of just about anyone I’ve ever seen.
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Prosecutors talk to people all day long. So sometimes, it’s just going home, sitting in silence and relaxing in peace and quiet.
What is your greatest extravagance?
Sunglasses. I spend a lot of money, maybe more than is warranted, on good sunglasses.
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