Robert J. Sewell Associate




Jay Sewell practices in general defense litigation with a particular interest in government investigations and white-collar defense. Jay defends motor carriers and their drivers in casualty litigation and handles professional liability, product liability, insurance defense and toxic tort matters. 

During law school, Jay clerked for two district attorneys’ offices and at the Alabama Attorney General’s Office. He obtained his third-year practice card and tried bench and jury trials in Alabama state courts. Jay also drafted appellate and post-conviction briefs to the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals, the Alabama Supreme Court and the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama. 

Before law school, Jay had a career as a police officer and detective with a municipal police department where he handled all manner of investigations – thefts, frauds, burglary, robbery and homicides, and worked in undercover narcotics investigations. Jay also led an investigation garnering national media coverage – the case of Harvey A. Updyke Jr., who poisoned the venerated Toomer’s Corner oak trees at Auburn University.

Areas of Focus

Government Investigations & White-Collar Defense
Jay has experience in general civil defense litigation and continues to build that practice at the intersection of civil and criminal law. Jay's law enforcement and criminal-trial background enhances that practice. After graduating at the top of his law school class, Jay began working at a litigation-only firm in Birmingham where he had a general litigation practice with a focus on white-collar criminal defense and investigations. He served in active roles in multiple jury trials, including taking witnesses in federal criminal trials.

Representative Matters

As a first-year associate, participated in a federal criminal trial in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, representing a building services company executive against claims of honest services fraud.

Participated in a seven-week federal criminal trial representing a south Alabama doctor accused of operating a “pill mill”; primary drafter of the brief on direct appeal, and argued the appeal before the Eleventh Circuit.

Assisted in the investigation of a municipal police department’s response to demonstrations in June 2020; primary editor of the 248-page final report.

Defended a local elections official in a federal lawsuit against the State of Alabama and several localities relating to allegations of voting rights discrimination during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Represented the Office of the Georgia Secretary of State relating to a state grand jury investigation into allegations of attempts to improperly influence the Office relating to the November 2020 presidential election; that representation extended to the Secretary and the Office before the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6 Attack on the United States Capitol.