Lori Tolle is a former Deputy District Attorney for Jefferson County, Colorado. She was at the DA’s office for ten years, five of which she spent in the Crimes Against Children unit. After taking a break from lawyering from 2011 to 2019 to spend time with her kids, she returned to practice in 2019 as a plaintiff's attorney at the office of Fuicelli & Lee. On the recommendation of Keith Fuicelli, Lori began consuming content by Keith Mitnik and Nick Rowley. Here is what happened:
From my initial entry into civil practice, Keith Fuicelli sang Keith Mitnik's praises (as well as Nick Rowley’s) like you wouldn’t believe. He repeatedly “strongly, strongly encouraged” all attorneys in the firm to listen to and read everything and anything Keith put out. “Mitnik” is part of the firm’s vernacular; his name manages to function as both a verb and an adjective. And then, four months into me joining the civil litigation world, COVID hit. For me, this was the game-changer. To watch Keith live during those COVID webinars was really spectacular. His authenticity absolutely shone through, and that was when I really began to hear his message and it resonated with me totally and completely. I was (am) a believer. And an enthusiast.
Other than inspiring me personally, Keith's teachings have been practiced by our firm and we are achieving more and better justice as a result. My first civil trial was this May. It was a tiny little county court case—meds at about $8k, chiro treatment only, and full recovery. I was excited to take this low stakes case to trial because it gave me a chance to cut my teeth on some of Keith’s teachings. We utilized the “Mitnik” voir dire, opening, and closing strategies. I got so many potential jurors dismissed for cause that we almost had to get an additional jury pool from the jury commissioner. The jury gave us a verdict of about $30k. That was a huge win here in Colorado—probably two times the verdict one would expect here on $8k chiro-only meds without permanency.
My second trial a couple of weeks ago was a disc extrusion case where our client opted for conservative treatment, foregoing injections and surgery, so there was only $15k in meds. The opening offer was $11k. Having been indoctrinated by Keith (and Matt Morgan), we believed this case was worth six figures and we wanted to “Mitnik it” at trial. And that is what we did. We opted to drop the economics, per Rowley’s teachings. This led to the defense waiving their jury request, so we had a bench trial. Still, we utilized Keith's teachings and focused on what was taken, pilot light pain, “the little things,” and we developed damages models consistent with the maximum justice matrix. Ultimately we obtained $1.1 million on a case where there was only $15k in meds. It was a righteous verdict. We believe it was us being good students of Keith that yielded the just result.
Last but not least, I wanted to mention Keith's strategies for how to prepare for trial. The “Beautiful Mind” analogy is one hundred percent an analogy I’ve drawn for myself before! I’ve always known what I needed to do to get myself organized and put together; it can be messy and tedious (exactly as Keith said—just get the thoughts and ideas out and then piece them together from there), but not everyone prepares this way. So it was super reassuring and validating to hear Keith, too, has a method and strategy that looks a little chaotic from the outside and requires time and intention. Lastly, the analogies! I think and communicate in very much the same way—I live and breathe by analogies, and I think Keith's are always spot-on!
Don't Eat the Bruises by Keith Mitnik
Trial by Human by Nicholas Rowley and Steve Halteman
Voir Dire and Opening Statement by Nicholas Rowley, Courtney Rowley, and Wendy Saxon