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Dr. Belcher’s experience with federal appeals began many years ago when Dr. Belcher, while still attending law school in New Orleans, accepted a summer clerkship position in the commercial litigation section of a prominent New Orleans-based law firm then known as McGlinchey, Stafford, Mintz, and Cellini and now known as McGlinchey Stafford PLLC. During this clerkship, Dr. Belcher participated in the creation of an appellate brief filed with the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in an intellectual property case involving Barq’s root beer, a soft drink product as beloved by New Orleans natives as their home-grown alcoholic beverage allegedly brewed from the waters of the Mississippi River, Dixie Beer.

Dr. Belcher was pressed to continue focusing upon appellate issues during his earliest years as a trial attorney with the Department of Justice, while he was serving as a Special Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern Judicial District of Virginia: Virtually every conviction that Dr. Belcher obtained was challenged on appeal to the Fourth Circuit, including not only several jury convictions that were overturned on appeal but also several appeals in which the Fourth Circuit was called upon to interpret a recent modification to Rule 11(d) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedures, which governs attempted withdrawals of guilty pleas.

During the remainder of his tenure with the Department of Justice, while Dr. Belcher was focusing upon criminal tax violations, most criminal defendants whose convictions Dr. Belcher procured challenged those convictions on appeal. Following the customary practice of the Tax Division, these appeals were generally then assigned to Tax Division attorneys who specialize in appeals. However, Dr. Belcher assisted appellate counsel with the appeals of cases that he had tried and was listed “on brief” for such appeals. Additionally, Dr. Belcher was allowed to serve as lead appellate counsel for several consolidated appeals that he successfully argued before the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

In private practice, most of Dr. Belcher’s appellate work has been with the Maryland Court of Special Appeals. Dr. Belcher has successfully represented appellants before the Maryland Court of Special Appeals not only in criminal cases but in domestic and non-domestic civil cases.

In addition to state court appeals, Dr. Belcher has also briefed and argued appeals on behalf of criminal defendants and private civil litigants before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and the United States Court of Appeals of the District of Columbia.


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