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Springfield, MO

2015 40 Under 40 Honoree: Christopher Hoeman

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Christopher Hoeman set two goals for himself by age 30: try at least five jury trials and promote to senior assistant prosecuting attorney. He achieved both.

Hoeman started as an assistant attorney with the Greene County Prosecuting Attorneyís Office in 2011 and rose to his current position of senior assistant two years later.

"At that time, I was one of the youngest senior assistants in the recent history of our office," Hoeman says. "Senior assistant prosecutors work exclusively (on) felony case loads and are responsible for the training and development of new attorneys."

He actually exceeded his goal of five jury trials - when most cases result in a plea agreement or settlement and are never heard by a jury. "To date, I have tried seven jury trials in addition to countless bench trials," Hoeman says.

After beginning in the Child Support Unit, Hoeman transferred to the General Crimes Unit and moved last year to the Persons Crimes Unit, where he prosecutes sex crimes, including those against children.

“I was selected for this position based on the combination of my trial skills and my ability to interact well with crime victims,” Hoeman says.

Helping victims of crime and giving them a voice is one of the most rewarding parts of a job that exposes the worst of human nature.

“For many victims, the criminal justice process can be as traumatizing as the crime itself,” Hoeman says. “The process of bringing a case to trial can take a lot of time in some cases, and at certain points, victims of crimes can be forced to recount and relive horrible experiences in their lives. My role ... is to prepare a victim for that process, to ensure they know what to expect and they are as comfortable as possible throughout. As prosecutors, assisting the victims of crimes in telling their stories is the only way we can seek justice on their behalf and hold offenders accountable.”

That desire to help extends to Hoeman’s co-workers.

“The ability to assist others and influence the success of others is one of the primary reasons I work as an assistant prosecutor despite other opportunities that have arisen over the years,” Hoeman says.

He believes helping new prosecuting attorneys, many of whom are recent graduates, is one of the most important parts of his job, and he has served as an instructor for his office’s in-house training program.

“When we do our job well, our attorneys are presented (with) opportunities to do a wide variety of things,” Hoeman says.

He belongs to the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association and has served as chairman of its Young Lawyers Section. Hoeman is the congregation president at Messiah Lutheran Church, and he is a member of Springfield Rotaract Club board.[[In-content Ad]]

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