Attorney's goal is to help those in trouble

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As passionate as Jacque Hawk is about practicing law, he still doesn't hesitate a 10th of a second before picking baseball as his first love.

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Attorney Jacque Hawk coaches his son's baseball team when he's not in the office. Despite his passion for law, he maintains the sport as his first love. He has coached baseball for 19 years.  Andrew Davis Tucker/Staff
Andrew Davis Tucker/Staff
Attorney Jacque Hawk coaches his son's baseball team when he's not in the office. Despite his passion for law, he maintains the sport as his first love. He has coached baseball for 19 years.

And then he laughs one of those guffaws that come from the belly. He does that easily and often.

Mr. Hawk has coached kids' baseball teams for 19 years. It started with a neighbor boy who begged for help. Mr. Hawk's contempt for the coach's abusive style led him to volunteer for the job.

These days he coaches his son's school team through the week, and on weekends they travel with 14-year-old Erin's Shockers Blue team.

"And in between I practice law," Mr. Hawk said.

The law wasn't his first career choice. He was at Augusta State, studying art and playing in a rock 'n' roll band when his brother Victor asked him to help out one summer.

"I liked what he was doing. He was helping people," Mr. Hawk said. He went back to school, changed his major, started taking academics seriously to raise his grades, and he got into law school.

He's been helping people since, sometimes earning the ire of opponents, such as the federal prosecutor at whose table Mr. Hawk once hid a toy gun.

His client, Mr. Hawk explained, was delivering some marijuana when he was busted. The drug charge meant a year or two in prison, but the real danger was the weapon charge that would mean many years in prison, Mr. Hawk said. His client's defense was that he didn't know the gun was in the car he used for the delivery.

Mr. Hawk wanted jurors to understand how someone can drive a car every day without knowing there was a gun inside. Without his opponent's knowledge, or that of the judge or security officers, Mr. Hawk stashed a toy gun at the table where the prosecutor sat. Imagine, he told the jurors, that this was a country where it was illegal for a prosecutor to have a gun in the courtroom while he tried a case.

His client was acquitted within minutes.

Mr. Hawk isn't the most popular person in some prosecutors' offices, said John Garcia, a former assistant U.S. attorney now in private practice. But Mr. Garcia said he has found Mr. Hawk to be straightforward in his dealings.

He remembers another case in which the narcotics agents found a load of cocaine at a man's business. The packaging had the defendant's fingerprints on it. Officers also found precision, professional-grade scales at his home.

"Jacque got him acquitted," Mr. Garcia said.

Mr. Hawk said he loves being in a trial, trying to get jurors to see his clients as he sees them. Through his eyes, people are who they are because of genetics and life experiences.

Kindness is a core value for Mr. Hawk. His charity extends to some whom others would describe as monsters, such as convicted serial killer Reinaldo Rivera.

"We were meant to be kind to each other, to be understanding and compassionate to each other," he said.

Mr. Hawk, who recently argued Mr. Rivera's appeal before the Georgia Supreme Court, was vilified in at least one "rant" published in The Augusta Chronicle.

"It goes with the territory," Mr. Hawk said with a shrug. "If we don't do our jobs, if we don't bust our butts ... that case would never end.

"If you do it any other way, you're just creating a mess that somebody else will have to clean up."

Reach Sandy Hodson at (706) 823-3226 or sandy.hodson@augustachronicle.com.

JACQUE HAWK

AGE: 49

EDUCATION: Graduated Cumberland Law School, Samford University

FAMILY: Sons Jade, 19, and Erin, 14; divorced, but back together with his eighth-grade sweetheart

Comments (14)

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THESOUTHLOST
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THESOUTHLOST 04/16/07 - 09:08 am
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If I ever needed a lawyer, I

If I ever needed a lawyer, I would employ either Hawk brothers. They are great at what they do, but most important, they believe in what they do.

allrise
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allrise 04/16/07 - 09:57 am
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I don't respect anyone who

I don't respect anyone who defends evil. Hope he sleeps well.

Mattie
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Mattie 04/16/07 - 10:18 am
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It scares me the way that

It scares me the way that they are making a hero out of a guy who got a drug dealer off. There's a special place in hell for defense attorneys like him.

Mattie
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Mattie 04/16/07 - 10:20 am
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By the way--is he considered

By the way--is he considered a midget or just really, really short?

THESOUTHLOST
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THESOUTHLOST 04/16/07 - 10:48 am
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I guess it is better to be

I guess it is better to be small in size than had a pea brain. I guess you will call the Orkin man should you ever need a lawyer.

ForHim
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ForHim 04/16/07 - 11:45 am
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Attorneys have a job to do.

Attorneys have a job to do. And they have to do it to the best of their ability, whether it is defending a junkie, jaywalker or murderer. I will defend their obligation to do so. I will not, however, defend them bragging about their "success" in winning a case when they know full well that the defendant is guilty as sin. I certainly would not let a person with those values (or lack thereof) coach my child's ball team. I think bragging about getting a drug pusher acquitted is disgusting and shows how little character he has (no pun intended).

THESOUTHLOST
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THESOUTHLOST 04/16/07 - 12:23 pm
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So, it is kay to call him a

So, it is kay to call him a MIDGET? This is why I call some on this site hypocrites. No one called Mattie to task for her calling Mr. Hawk a MIDGET, but Call President Bush dumb or even just disagree with him, hell you all are ready to hang them.

Ga Peach
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Ga Peach 04/16/07 - 12:25 pm
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Mattie he's not a midget but

Mattie he's not a midget but he's a little boy man. It really depends if I would employ any Attorney(don't know much about the Hawk brothers) in Augusta especially when they worry about thier(Jack B, D. Brown, and others) livelyhood more than Justice.

whyme
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whyme 04/16/07 - 01:09 pm
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I asked a friend whose father

I asked a friend whose father was a defense attorney how he could defend such evil people. I was told that even though the person has committed a heinous crime, for example, and he found it despicable, he believes in the institution of the law in which everyone is entitled to a fair trial. He wasn't there to get anyone off, just to make sure that his client was fairly represented. If not, then those clients who were truly innocent would never see justice either. Just a thought.

henrystripe
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henrystripe 04/16/07 - 02:04 pm
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A little reminder to those

A little reminder to those superficial, unenlightened individuals who worry about referring to him as a "midget": He is a PERSON. No one deserves to be objectified. The only thing "small" here is YOUR mind.

charligris
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charligris 04/16/07 - 04:31 pm
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The criminal justice system

The criminal justice system is designed so that everyone, regardless of guilty or innocense receives a fair trial. And that guilty or innocense is to be determined by a jury of our peers. Not by public opinion. Mr. Hawk was not bragging about how he is able to get off criminals, merely pointing out that some laws are just as flawed as the so called criminals that commit the offenses. And for everyone out their who read this and the only comment they could wrap their small minds around was couriosity about whether he is a midget or not, are truly pathetic. Mr. Hawk is a kind man, great father, great coach and a very talented attorney (the kind that does his job regardless of what his clients are charged with, without judging their character and in a time when everyone is only concerned with money, takes many cases pro bono and waives his fees when he believes in his client).

charligris
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charligris 04/16/07 - 04:36 pm
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And just another thought for

And just another thought for Mattie, not only does she believe that she is judge and jury for everyone convicted of a crime, she also seems to believe that she is God and determines who goes to heaven and hell. Everyone out there had better hope she is never sitting on their jury.

biged30809
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biged30809 04/16/07 - 04:36 pm
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Don't forget that in this

Don't forget that in this country you supposed to be presumed innocent until proven guilty. It is a shame that more and more people in this country are automatically assume guilt before innocence. Just hope that you don't ever get into trouble!!!

bran_cchs_ga
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bran_cchs_ga 04/18/07 - 04:21 pm
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Jacque is a great man.

Jacque is a great man. Regardless of his occupation, his compassion for those around him, his caring for children and friends, and his love for everyone involved in his life makes him a great person and does nothing but add to his success as an attorney. He can't pick and chose which clients he represents just like a doctor can't pick their patients. They help whoever needs them. His job is not to get criminals acquitted, it's to insure that they have a fair trial, as is every attorney's. To judge him on that without knowing his character is small minded. He's a great father, caring friend, wonderful coach, and i couldn't ask for a better boss. Just because he's good at his job DOES NOT make him evil. Wouldn't you want someone like him on your side? Regardless of guilt or innocence, the US law states that everyone deserves a fair trial. He makes it so.
And the word "midget" isn't a real term. Try to look it up in a PDR and you'll feel as small as you interpret him to be.

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