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Your Best Defense

Experienced lawyers helping people in Des Moines just like you.

Nicholas A. Sarcone

  • Partner


West Des Moines, IA





If you are facing federal or state criminal charges you deserve your best defense.

Choosing a lawyer is a big deal. Your liberty is in our hands. Whether you have been caught in a bad circumstance or made a series of bad decisions, I have seen it before and you don’t have to face it alone. I will put my experience of representing thousands of people in state and federal criminal court to work for you and I intend to get you the best possible result.

When I worked at the Federal Public Defender’s Office while in law school at the University of Iowa, I had the realization that no matter the crime, everyone deserves a skilled, intelligent advocate working tirelessly to give them their best defense. If I were charged with a crime I would expect that, so why shouldn’t you? I believe that every person deserves the best possible defense. You are probably nervous, worried, scared and likely angry. That is natural. You want someone to deal with the problem and help you get the best outcome. That’s where I come in.

After my summers in the Federal Defender Office in San Francisco and the Federal Defender Office in Des Moines, I became an Assistant Public Defender in Tampa, FL. For the last several years I have been in private practice. I’ve represented thousands of clients facing charges ranging from simple assault to complex federal drug conspiracies to sexual assault, burglary, robbery and beyond. I’ve taken many of those clients to jury and bench trials. I have also argued some of their cases before the Iowa Supreme Court and Iowa Court of Appeals. It is likely that I have handled a case not unlike yours.

When I represent you, you can expect me to: communicate, counsel and advocate.

Communication. Communication is the key to any good relationship. Yes, I am busy. It is my intention to return phone calls and emails as quickly as possible. I also make it a priority to explain issues in your case and break them down so you understand them. Let’s face it, the law isn’t simple or easy (that’s why I went to law school) and that is why I am here.

Counsel. They don’t call us counselors for nothing. I am a straight shooter. I’m going to give you the most well reasoned advice I can give, even if you dislike it. I often counsel clients about steps they can take while their case is pending–to better themselves and their case. My job is to counsel you to the best outcome, whatever that may be.

Advocate. My job is to dig into your case and make sure no stone is left unturned. No record left unsubpoenaed. No motion left unfiled. Getting great plea deals, winning motions to suppress and getting cases dismissed requires creativity, skill and ingenuity in the approach to your defense.  This becomes particularly important in trial or if I need to take your case before the Iowa Supreme Court.

I’m also privileged to practice law with Dean Stowers. Dean has a brilliant legal mind. We operate our office as a team. We strategize together, offer suggestions and advice and we both love to win.

Choosing a lawyer is a big deal. Your liberty is in our hands. It can be an overwhelming experience. While I cannot promise you what the outcome of your case will be, I can promise that I will put my experience and dedication to work for you.  I look forward to your call!

Areas of Practice

  • Adult and Juvenile Criminal Defense
  • Federal Criminal Defense
  • Drug Crimes
  • Property Seizure & Forfeiture
  • Sex Crimes
  • Traffic Violations
  • Assault
  • Alcohol Crimes
  • Robbery & Burglary Crimes
  • Child Pornography Crimes
  • Theft, Fraud, Forgery & Related Crimes

Bar Admissions

  • Florida, 2007
  • Iowa, 2008
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of Iowa, 2010
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 8th Circuit, 2010
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Iowa


  • University of Iowa College of Law, Iowa City, Iowa
    • J.D. - 2007
  • Saint Louis University, St. Louis , Missouri
    • B.A. - 2004
    • Honors: Magna Cum Laude
    • Major: Political Science


  • Basics of a Criminal Case, Iowa Association for Justice, 02/01/2014 to 02/01/2014
  • Discovery in a Criminal Case, Iowa Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, 08/01/2014 to 08/01/2014
  • Litigating a Criminal Case, NBE, 10/01/2014 to 10/01/2014
  • Criminal Defense Basics, Iowa Defense Counsel, 02/27/2015 to 02/27/2015

Honors and Awards

  • Top 100 Trial Lawyers

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Iowa Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Present
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, Present
  • Iowa Association for Justice, Criminal Core Group Member, Present
  • National Trial Lawyers , Top 100, Present
  • National Academy of Criminal Defense Attorneys, Present

Past Employment Positions

  • Federal Public Defender Northern District of California, Clerk, 05/2005 to 08/2005
  • Federal Public Defender Southern District of Iowa, Clerk, 05/2006 to 08/2006
  • Hillsborough County Public Defender - Tampa, Florida, Assistant Public Defender, 08/2007 to 10/2008


  • Sigma Phi Epsilon

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