During the 1960’s, we witnessed for the first time, citizens fighting back against government overreaching and unfairness. Neil Rockind was born on September 6, 1968, at the height of those tumultuous times in Detroit, Michigan. He received his education from Bloomfield Hills Andover High School (Class of 1986); the University of Michigan (Bachelor of General Studies, 1990); and, Wayne State University Law School (Juris Doctor, 1993).
Rockind is licensed to practice law in Michigan. He is admitted to practice before the United States Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit, the United States District Courts for the Eastern District of Michigan, Western District of Michigan and the Northern District of Ohio. He has been admitted pro hac vice in other states.
Rockind’s talents as a trial lawyer were honed during his tenure as an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney in the Oakland County Prosecutor’s Office, one of the most famous prosecutor’s offices in the country. Rockind was an assistant prosecutor from 1993 to 1997 and handled thousands of criminal cases, many of which resulted in jury trials. Due to both his record and his ferocity, Rockind gained the moniker, “the Rockweiler.” His career as a prosecutor was chronicled in profile articles that appeared in several local newspapers, including the Detroit Free Press and the Oakland Press.
As a prosecutor, Rockind quickly became a special prosecutor, the title given to prosecutors who were specifically assigned to handle complex and high profile cases. As a special prosecutor, he handled the most complex and high profile cases in the office, including but not limited to People v Kevorkian (the prosecution of famed assisted suicide advocate Jack Kevorkian), People v Horton (the prosecution of a pastor charged with taking clandestine videotapes of his parishioners in the bathrooms of his church) and People v Mayhew (a groundbreaking vehicular homicide case). Rockind also prosecuted many high level drug dealers, including one of the few cases resulting from an Oakland County Citizen’s Grand Jury indictmen
In 1997, Rockind made a change: he pursued a career as a criminal defense lawyer. In private practice, Rockind has handled countless high profile cases. He was the legal commentator for WDIV (NBC) and had a recurring role on a legal news series for WJBK (Fox 2). He has appeared on or been involved in cases that have been covered by WDIV (NBC), WXYZ (ABC), WJBK (Fox 2), WGPR (CBS), UPN 50, ABC News, NBC News, CBS News, Fox News, MSNBC, CNN, CNBC, COURT TV, WJR, WWJ, WXYT, America Free Radio, the Washington Post, New York Times, Detroit Free Press, Detroit News, the Oakland Press, Daily Tribune, Macomb Daily, Grosse Pointe News and other major news periodicals across the country.
He has represented clients in matters ranging from drunk driving to complex federal cases. He has represented lead defendants in cases involving no notoriety whatsoever and others, such as the infamous Basketbrawl (Piston v Pacer) assault case (in which he obtained the only dismissal) and the investigation into noted attorney Geoffrey Nels Fieger, that have garnered national media attention.
Neil Rockind is/has been a member of the Michigan State Bar, New York State Bar, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Criminal Defense Attorneys of Michigan, Michigan Trial Lawyers Association, American Bar Association, American Association for Justice, National College of District Attorneys (past member) and Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan (past member). He is a member of the Criminal Defense section of the State Bar of Michigan. He is also on the Regional Advisory Board of the Anti Defamation League, is a member of Cannabis Patients United, an elite medical marijuana advocacy group, on the Board of the Marijuana Patients Organization, another advocacy group for medical marijuana patients and a Board member of Safer Michigan, a safe access to medical marijuana advocacy group that started in Michigan around the passage of the Medical Marijuana Act.
Rockind has been one of Michigan’s leading and most visible advocates for patients and caregivers in the medical marijuana community. Neil Rockind has represented the owners and operators of Clinical Relief, the original and first dispensary prosecution case in the state and obtained a dismissal of all charges in that case, the operators of Herbal Remedies, another high profile medical marijuana dispensary prosecution, the Commerce Township Grow Warehouse case in which he successfully assisted his client in avoiding criminal charges (and the client is now suing the County), the owners of a seedling, tween and clone distributor in Macomb County, dispensary owners in multiple counties, caregivers and patients across the state of Michigan and is currently defending two (2) individuals who are charged with Racketeering offenses for their operation of marijuana related enterprises. Neil Rockind was the subject of a documentary entitled Blazed and Confused, a look at the medical marijuana wars in Michigan and was one of the first to obtain a dismissal of a medical marijuana case relying on the immunity/defense provisions in the Act. Neil Rockind was also one of the lawyers to catch a narcotics detective, in a medical marijuana investigation, in multiple lies and acts of misconduct – the detective was ultimately disciplined in a similar circumstance and was terminated from the force. Neil Rockind has testified before the House Judiciary Committee regarding medical marijuana and is frequent lecturer on the subject. Neil Rockind has taught lawyers at the state and local level about medical marijuana issues and has participated in forum discussions with local representatives, elected officials and public officials on the subject.
Neil Rockind is also a frequent contributor on Fox 2 News and their two (2) highly rated television shows: the Edge and Let It Rip. Clips of Rockind’s appearances on those shows are available for viewing at Rockindlaw.com and include discussions about guns, gun control and the Zimmerman trial.
He was named one of Michigan’s Mover’s and Shakers by 944 Magazine and profiled in the October, 2009 Edition of the magazine. Neil Rockind was also selected as one of Michigan’s SuperLaywers for 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013, an honor bestowed upon only 5% of the lawyers practicing in the state. Super Lawyers even designated him amongst Michigan’s Top 100 Lawyers in 2012 and among the Top 50 Lawyers (representing individual citizens versus corporate lawyers) in the entire state. Hour Magazine readers voted Neil Rockind the Best of Detroit in 2011 and he has been named by DBusiness Magazine among their Top Lawyers for three (3) years running. The National Trial Lawyers Association has included Rockind among its Top 100 Trial Lawyers list. He has lectured to lawyers, police officers and citizens regarding current issues in law.