Prior to enrolling in law school, Matthews R. Bark volunteered and interned for Chief Judge Honorable Joyce Baylor-Thompson. Together, Judge Baylor-Thompson and Mr. Bark created the first mediation program for probate in the State of Maryland. (See this Article). Once in law school, at the University of Baltimore School of Law, Mr. Bark decided he wanted to be an advocate for those charged with crimes. Mr. Bark knew in order to be the best, he needed to acquire a variety of skills. That is why he was as teacher’s assistant in the legal writing and research department, reaching the highest position in that program in his last year of law school as the supervisor of all the teacher’s assistants. He also was a legal scholar for the class Torts. Also, while in law school Mr. Bark interned for the State Attorney’s Office in and for Baltimore City, Maryland. Mr. Bark, also interned for the highest court in the State of Maryland, the Maryland Court of Appeals. Mr. Bark also worked for the House of Representatives, Delegate Jon Cardin, in Maryland. Mr. Bark did all this while maintaining high marks, and graduating with honors, cum laude.
Here are a couple of examples of cases from when Mr. Bark was working for the Maryland Court of Appeals: Case 1 and Case 2. After graduating law school, Mr. Bark decided to move to Longwood, Florida. The reason for the move: While in law school, Mr. Bark took his last winter break by visiting family and friends in Longwood, FL. He interned with a law firm, worked on a high profile case, and drove a convertible for three weeks at the end of December. Enough said. The decision was made, and he applied for a position with the Office of the State Attorney for the Eighteenth Judicial Circuit in and for Brevard and Seminole Counties. Mr. Bark was hired by the Office of the State Attorney for the Eighteenth Judicial Circuit in and for Brevard and Seminole Counties by then State Attorney Norman Wolfinger. Mr. Bark, despite living in Longwood, was asked to start his career as a prosecutor in Brevard County, which he did. After a year of working in Brevard County and living on Satellite Beach, Mr. Bark asked to be transferred to Seminole County, home, so he could be closer to his family, and he was.
While prosecuting in Seminole County Mr. Bark received Mother’s Against Drunk Driver’s Award for prosecutor of the year. Prior to that, he was recognized by Chief Lionel Cote of the Satellite Beach Police Department for his work in DUI prosecution. Also while at the Office of the State Attorney in Seminole County, Mr. Bark was given many high profile challenging cases. Cases where a teacher was accused of bringing a handgun on to an elementary school campus, where a female deputy sheriff was battered by her husband, where a 60-year-old man was accused of video recording a 12-year-old girl undressing, where a Jewish boy was arrested on Rosh Hoshana because people were illegally parked. Mr. Bark was trusted with very sensitive cases.
Due to demonstrating his talent and work ethic, the law firm of Jaeger &Blankner recruited Mr. Bark to work for them. He worked there for three years, practicing criminal defense in Brevard County, Orange County, Seminole County, Osceola County and Volusia County. Mr. Bark litigated, tried, and appealed hundreds of cases for this firm. Realizing that the size of the firm prevented Mr. Bark from developing the relationships he desired with his clients and hindered his ability to get his clients the “best” results he decided to open his own practice. Mr. Bark still maintains an excellent relationship and appreciates the work of his prior firm.
It is human nature to make accusations and to believe them without proper evidence. This has remained true from before The Salem Witch trials, and McCarthyism, just to give a couple of examples. It is my duty and honor to make sure you are not falsely accused, not wrongfully prosecuted, not overly prosecuted, and not treated unfairly or cruelly. It is my duty and honor to zealously advocate on your behalf.
• Jaeger and Blankner, Associate, 2009 – 2012
• Office of the State Attorney, 18th Circuit, FL, Assistant State Attorney, 2007 - 2009
• Seminar instructor, Office of the State Attorney, 2007: How to Testify (Teaching Police Officers)
• Interned for the Maryland House of Delegates
• Interned for the Maryland Court of Appeals
• Interned for the Maryland Legislature
• University of Baltimore School of Law, Law Scholar for Torts
• University of Baltimore School of Law, Head Teacher's Assistant for Legal Research and Writing
• University of Baltimore School of Law, Baltimore, MarylandJ.D. (Cum Laude) - 2006
• Towson University, Towson, Maryland B.S. (Cum Laude) - 2003 Major: Finance
• Award of Excellence, Orange County Bar Association Criminal Law Section, 2017
• For Service as Chair, OCBA Criminal Law Section, 2015
• Mother's Against Drunk Drivers Prosecutor of the Year, 2008
• Dean's Citation for Service to the U of B, School of Law, 2006
• Florida Bar
• Immediate past Chairman of the Orange County Bar Association Criminal Law Section;
• Member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers;
• Member of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
• Member of the American Bar Association
• Member of the Bar of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida;
• Member of the Bar of the United States Circuit Court of the 11 Circuit;
• Orange County Bar Association, Criminal Law Section, Board Member, 2009 - Present
• Central Florida Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys, Member, 2009 – Present
• Seminole County Bar Association, Presently
• Seminole County Inns of Court, Presently
"Mr. Bark presenting at a continuing legal education course for new assistant state attorneys and public defenders in Orange County on ethics and professionalism with the honorable judge Julie O'Kane, the honorable judge Lisa Munyon, attorney Mark Horowitz, assistant state attorney Crystal Allen and attorney Wanda Reas." - 2017
• Board Member of the House of Hope, 2003 - 2006
• Designed the Mediation Program for the Baltimore City Orphans Court, 2003
• Practicing like a professional - Professionalism and Ethics for State Attorneys and Public Defenders, 2017
• Anatomy of a Criminal Case - Preserving Your Client's Driver's License DMV Hearings and License Implications, 2016
• Orange County Bar Association - Professionalism in Criminal Law, 2015
• Trial Advocacy Class - Trial Advocacy, 2014
• Seminole County Bar Association - Bar Luncheon/Led prayer, 2014
• Barry Law School Alumini CLE - Social Media for Lawyers, 2014
• University of Baltimore School of Law Course - Race and the Law, 2013
• North Orange County Bar Association CLE on Diversion Programs - Mental Health Court, 2013
• Brevard County Law Enforcement - Training How To Testify, 2007
• The Briefs (Orange County Bar Association) - Intoxilyzer 8000 Litigation in Orange County Florida, 2015
• The Briefs (Orange County Bar Association) - From Frye to Daubert and the Effect on Criminal Cases, 2015
1. Criminal Defense
2. Litigation & Appeals
3. Administrative Law (DHSMV)
4. State Trial Practice
5. State Appellate Practice
6. Computer Crimes
9. Professional Responsibility
11. Alternative Dispute Resolution
13. Administrative Hearing & Adjudication
14. Search & seizure Protections
15. Criminal Fraud
16. Drug violations
18. Sex Offenses
19. Traffic Violations
20. Grand Jury Proceedings
21. Juvenile Crimes
23. Parole & Probation
24. RICO Act
"As far as I am concerned, what he has been able to accomplish for me has been nothing short of miraculous... For anyone who may find themselves at a legal crossroads, I would HIGHLY RECOMMEND Matthews Bark as someone to have in your corner!” - Jonathan P.
Mr. Bark has witnessed many people make mistakes in their lives. He has made mistakes himself. He knows that the society we are in can lack compassion and forgiveness. The public, perhaps now more then ever with the media, form mobs, and will exhaust all resources to prosecute an individual. The talking points by politicians about such things as being tough on crime, has led to inflexible, abusive penalties for even petty misdemeanors.
Knowing the challenge that you find yourself in, Mr. Bark believes that you should not face such circumstances alone. He believes that all people are entitled to competent counsel and a zealous defense. In order to provide this service Mr. Bark has spent a tremendous amount of time and effort to perfect the required skills. He has worked in all three branches of government. The reason this is important to you is because Mr. Bark understands how laws are made by the legislative branch, how laws are interpreted by the judicial branch, and how they are enforced by the executive branch.