A New Direction For An Established Firm
The Missouri DWI & Criminal Law Center at Benjamin Law Firm, LLC, is a new venture for an established legal practice. After years of serving the Kansas City metro area as the Benjamin Law Firm, LLC, we decided to expand our criminal defense practice into a law firm of its own. The new enterprise remains under the leadership of founder and managing attorney Kimberly Benjamin.
Each of our attorneys is highly experienced in criminal law and has received additional training at the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College. Our list of knowledgeable and seasoned attorneys will continue to grow over time.
The most famous lawyer in America, Kimberly Benjamin’s friend and mentor Gerry Spence.
Our Mission And Our Promise To Clients
The purpose and promise of the Missouri DWI & Criminal Law Center is summed up in our mission statement:
“We fight for your rights when the government comes after you, your freedom or your drivers’ license in a DWI or traffic or criminal case.”
We work tirelessly to hone our skills as defense attorneys because that’s what our clients deserve and expect. If you are facing criminal charges, your freedom is on the line. And if you have entrusted your case to us, we want to show you that we take your freedom as seriously as you do.
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Learn More About Each of Our Firm’s Criminal Defense Lawyers
Kimberly J. Benjamin
Kimberly Benjamin started her career as a lawyer because she loved helping people. At the time, she did not have a clue that the criminal justice system was not fair to everyone and that innocent people were actually arrested and in prison. She quickly learned the truth as a public defender in Kansas City, Missouri, where she came to be known as a zealous fighter for her clients in and out of the courtroom.
Kim is known among her peers as an expert DWI and criminal defense lawyer and a spectacular trial lawyer who obtains unbelievable results for her clients. She has a passion for her work that emanates from her when she is in her element. She even assisted a civil law firm in suing a large corporation on behalf of an employee who was unlawfully discriminated against, helping them obtain the largest verdict in an employment discrimination case in Cass County. Because she loves helping people who are facing Goliaths like the government and corporations, she will continue to help other law firms in obtaining great verdicts in a jury trial.
Her desire to help more and more people caused Kim to find some of the best trial lawyers in Kansas City who shared her passion for defending the accused. She founded the Missouri DWI & Criminal Law Center at the Benjamin Law Firm so she could build a team of lawyers and legal assistants who focus on being the best at criminal and DWI defense. With that goal in mind Kim decided that her law firm would be the only one in Kansas City where the lawyers are all trained in the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College (TLC) methods. Kim attended TLC as a young lawyer in 2000, and joined the faculty at TLC in 2008, where she regularly teaches other lawyers how to win trials.
In addition to teaching, Kim is a sought-after speaker at legal seminars due to her tremendous success in the courtroom. She is on the faculty at the National College of DUI Defense (NCDD) and is the chair of the Bernard Edelman DWI Law & Science Seminar in Missouri. Kim regularly teaches lawyers about criminal and DWI law at seminars sponsored by the Missouri Bar, Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (MACDL), NCDD, Missouri State Public Defender System, Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association (KCMBA).
Kim is a lifetime member of MACDL, is a Fellow of the Bar with the KCMBA, is a board member of the Cass County Bar Association, and continues to actively serve on the board of MACDL, for which she was President in 2013-14. She was also honored to be appointed by the Missouri Governor to a term on the Missouri Ethics Commission.
Kim has received awards for her exceptional trial work on behalf of clients, including MACDL’s prestigious Atticus Finch Award and the Missouri Lawyers Weekly’s the Women’s Justice Award for litigation.
After obtaining 2 bachelor’s degrees at the University of Missouri at Columbia — where she was active in student activities and her sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta — Kim attended law school at the George Washington University Law School in Washington, DC. She was honored in law school to be an editor for one of the university’s law journals and to work at the Pentagon, just as her father had done when she was a child. As an Air Force brat, Kim lived in California, Alaska, Virginia and Washington, DC, before her father retired from the USAF. Her family settled in Harrisonville, MO, where Kim graduated high school as President of the Student Council and leader of several organizations.
George Washington University Law School, Washington, District of Columbia
Juris Doctor – 1996
Honors: Intellectual Property Law Journal – Notes Editor
University of Missouri, Columbia, MO
Political Science & Honors Interdisciplinary Studies (Speech Communication & Psychology) – 1993
Gerry Spence’s Trial Lawyers College, 2009 – Present
Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, various programs including DWI defense, 2006 – Present
Trial College for Public Defenders, Missouri Public Defender System, 2008 – Present
How to Series: Jury Instructions in Criminal Cases, Missouri Bar, 2010
How to Series: Traffic & DWI, Missouri Bar, 2009
How to Series: Traffic & DWI, Missouri Bar, 2010
Solo & Small Firm Conference, Missouri Bar, 2007 – Present
Trial Skills, Solo & Small Firm Conference, Missouri Bar, 2007
How to Series: Trial Techniques, Missouri Bar, 2008
Professional Associations and Memberships
Gerry Spence’s Trial Lawyers College, Staff Member/ Graduate/ F Warrior Board member, 2000 – Present
Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Board Member & CLE Chair, 2006 – Present
Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, Member, 2002 – Present
Cass County Bar Association, 2002 – Present
Harrisonville Business Women, Secretary, 2008 – Present
Kappa Alpha Theta
Matthew Thomas Gass
As a veteran, Matthew Gass understands the pressure of being under the gun and in a fight. In criminal defense, the fight for our client is not always a popular position—but every single client is treated with compassion, the understanding that you deserve a defense, and the promise that this firm will fight to protect those who cannot defend themselves against the government.
Matt first learned how to vigorously fight for his clients at the Missouri State Public Defender, and after a few years joined forces with other former public defenders at the Missouri DWI & Criminal Law Center at the Benjamin Law Firm. Matt continues to advocate for and protect the rights of his clients.
In 2015, Matt enhanced his trial skills at the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College (TLC), which is the best trial lawyers training program in the country. He recently attended the TLC seminar that focuses solely on criminal defense where he sharpened his skills to better fight for his clients.
Matt’s experience includes fighting for clients in nearly 2000 cases, including serious felonies. He has handled over 100 contested hearings and trials with successful results for very satisfied clients.
For the past 3 years Matt has attended the Missouri Municipal and Associate Circuit Judges Association conferences, and he also regularly attends TLC meetings and Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (MACDL) seminars.
Matt grew up in Marshall, Missouri, and now resides in Jackson County with his wife Bethanie, twins Josh & Ryan, and a little one on the way. He studied Political Science at Clemson University and the University of Missouri–Columbia where he graduated in 2004. While attending undergrad, he participated in Air Force ROTC, earning an Officer Commission in the United States Air Force and was stationed at Whiteman AFB, Missouri from 2004-2009 where he worked as an Executive Officer, and achieved the rank of Captain before leaving for law school. In 2006, he deployed with the 393d Bomb Squadron, one of only two B-2 Stealth Bomber units in the world, to Andersen AFB, Guam as part of the Bomber Forward Presence/Global Strike mission. He received his Juris Doctor law degree from the University of Missouri-Kansas City in 2012, and has been licensed in Missouri since 2013.
University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law, Kansas City, Missouri
J.D. – 2012
University of Missouri, Columbia, Missouri
B.A. – 2005
Major: Political Science
Professional Associations and Memberships
Past Employment Positions
Missouri State Public Defender, Assistant Public Defender, 2014 – 2016
United States Air Force, Officer, 2004 – 2009
Norman Craig Napier
Confident, knowledgeable, and experienced, Craig has represented thousands of citizens charged with serious felonies throughout Missouri. Whether it be in small towns, or big cities, each and every one of Craig’s clients know that he is ready to stand up to Judges, Prosecutors, or anyone on their behalf. He has achieved acquittals for clients charged with violent acts, sex crimes, and other serious matters. He is a respected trial attorney with over 30 felony jury trials under his belt and is ready to go to court, again, to fight for you.
Craig started his professional career as an investigative reporter after graduating from Wright State University with a degree in Communications Studies. In the mid-90s he worked at one of the last small-town daily newspapers — the Pulitzer Prize-winning Xenia Daily Gazette. He spent many days in court, covering trials of various crimes of note to the community and became a Court Appointed Special Advocate for the Juvenile Court.
This rekindled his long-held desire to go to law school and become a lawyer. He returned to his hometown and completed the UMKC School of Law in 2003. Since that time, Craig has continued to pursue his love of trial work and being a thorn in the side of a justice system which has forgotten all citizens are innocent until proven guilty.
Craig has spent his professional life since admission to the Missouri Bar in 2004 in pursuit of top-notch experience and training. He has taken most of the advanced trial training available to Missouri attorneys. He spent many years teaching trial skills to public defenders from all over the state, and in 2015 graduated from the National Criminal Defense College’s Trial Practice Institute. NCDC is an intensive two-week exploration of the criminal trial and breaks down each phase to increase advocacy and success. Craig also attends the local Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College (TLC) meetings with his colleagues at the law firm and enjoys combining his trial experience with the advanced TLC principles.
Since focusing on DWI/DUI work he has attended the DWI/DUI Bootcamp with two of Missouri’s DWI/DUI Defense Veterans, and attended DWI/DUI investigation training with a former law enforcement officer and international law enforcement instructor.
Born in Kansas City, Missouri, Craig has called Kansas City home for most of his life. He currently resides in Waldo with his wife, Jen, kids Aidan and Ayla, and rescue dog Blizzard.
UMKC School of Law, Kansas City, Missouri
Juris Doctor – 2003
Wright State University, Dayton, OH
Communications Studies – 2000
Professional Associations and Memberships
National Criminal Defense College’s Trial Practice Institute, 2015
Past Employment Positions
Court and County Government Reporter, Xenia Daily Gazette
Court Appointed Special Advocate, Xenia Juvenile Court
Tamera Allen joined the Missouri DWI & Criminal Law Center at the Benjamin Law Firm in April 2018 as the receptionist for the firm. Her passion for helping people quickly was evident to our owner and Tamera became the firm’s Client Services Specialist, where her responsibilities include assisting potential clients in hiring the firm. She also is a leader for the firm serving as the Office Manager and Marketing Manager.
Tamera excels at customer service by providing clients with a comforting atmosphere during the darkest and scariest time of their lives. With her calm persona, personable nature, confidence, and organizational skills, she is an invaluable asset to the law firm and our potential clients.
Office Manager and Marketing Manager
Outside of work, Tamera enjoys spending time with her husband, her son and the family dogs. For fun, the family enjoys weekend trips to their lake house where they hunt, fish, boat, hike, and trail ride. In her downtime, Tamera loves to read and listen to podcasts on personal and professional growth.
Tamera resides with her family in Cass County and grew up in the Kansas City area, having attended high school at Lee’s Summit West.
Caitlin Adams joined the Missouri DWI & Criminal Law Center Benjamin Law Firm in September of 2019 as the firm’s Case Manager. Her favorite part of her job at the Benjamin Law Firm is assisting people in navigating the legal system. During this stressful time in our clients’ lives, she enjoys helping them and making them feel at ease. Caitlin’s responsibilities include providing assistance to the attorneys in drafting initial pleadings, ensuring clients’ questions are answered, and promptly updating clients on their cases.
Caitlin grew up in the Kansas City area where she attended high school at Notre Dame de Sion. She earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice at the University of Maryland, where she played both volleyball and basketball.
After college she returned home and attended law school, receiving her Juris Doctor at the University of Missouri – Kansas City School of Law. Clerking for a trial judge in Denver after law school sparked her interest in criminal law, making her role here at the Benjamin Law Firm a perfect fit for her.
When not working, Caitlin enjoys being active at the gym, finding time to binge-watch her favorite shows on Netflix and Hulu, and spending time with her family, in particular, her three young children.
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