In the early morning of May 2, 1981, Danny Hansford was shot dead by James Williams with a World War II vintage Luger in a historic Savannah mansion. For the next eight-and-a-half years, through four murder trials and intrigue which reached the highest levels of Georgia politics-including a former governor and the Georgia Supreme Court-lawyers battled over whether the 50-year-old Williams shot the 21-year-old Hansford in self-defense. The case inspired a best-selling book and a movie directed by Clint Eastwood.
Written by Dep Kirkland, who arrived at the scene when Hansford's body was still on the floor, Lawyer Games is the true story of this remarkable case. Kirkland, the Chief Assistant DA at the time, made the decision to arrest Williams and tried the first of four murder trials alongside the district attorney. His firsthand knowledge allows him not only to deeply analyze the murder case but also to expose the legal mischief spawned when a defendant facing unshakable physical evidence possesses almost unlimited funds.
True crime aficionados will be drawn to the two stories told in the book: The riveting story of the case, its evidence (including facts never heard in the courtroom), trials and results, and the incredible eight-year campaign to beat a murder rap no matter what, with a look behind the curtain at a darker side of the American criminal justice system.
Savannah native Dep Kirkland practiced law privately and with the District Attorney's Office after graduating from the UGA School of Law. He was a member of the Georgia and District of Columbia bar associations, was admitted to practice before the US Supreme Court, and was named a life fellow of the Georgia Bar Foundation. Dep served as chairman of the State Bar Prison & Jail Committee, headed various subcommittees of the ABA Criminal Justice Section, and graduated from the National District Attorney's Association Career Prosecutor Course.
After appointment by Georgia's governor to head a state agency, Dep was recruited by the Satellite Broadcasting & Communications Association to design and lead an anti-piracy task force of former FBI agents. Dep was later lured away from the legal field by his dream of writing and acting, has studied and worked for several years in New York City and Los Angeles, and currently lives in Burbank, California, acting, writing, directing and producing for stage and film.