Photo of Dick Cease

Richard L. Cease

Richard L. Cease

Richard “Dick” Cease came to Winston & Cashatt in 1994 after retiring from a long and distinguished career as the Public Defender for Spokane County. Dick’s practice focused specifically on criminal law. Respected by defendants and prosecutors alike, Dick defended clients in some of Spokane County’s most famous criminal cases and created one of the finest public defender offices in Washington State.

Following graduation at University of Oregon, he served in the U.S. Marine Corps. After serving in the military, he attended Gonzaga Law School where he graduated in 1961. He was appointed a deputy prosecuting attorney for Spokane County and served in that capacity for two years. Dick represented personal injury clients at Winston & Cashatt during the late 1960’s and returned to the firm in 1994 after twenty-four years as Public Defender. He was appointed Spokane County’s first Public Defender in 1970. The office grew from an initial staff of two to forty attorneys and a budget of $3.5 million at his retirement in 1994. Dick was honored by acceptance into the American College of Trial Lawyers and has received the prestigious William O. Douglas Award from the Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He also received the Spokane County Bar Association’s Smithmore Myers Professionalism Award, the Washington State Bar Association’s Angelo Petress Award for significant contributions to the public and legal profession, and the Washington Defender Association Award for lifetime achievement in the defense of the poor.


  • Gonzaga University School of Law, J.D. 1961
  • University of Oregon

Admitted to Practice

  • State of Washington, 1966

Professional and Civic Activities

  • Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Member
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Member
  • National Legal Aid and Defender Association, Member
  • Washington Defender Association, Co-founder
  • American College of Trial Lawyers, Fellow