General Crime

Spencer Freeman Smith a attorney with a San Francisco law firm pleaded guilty to felony hit-and-run

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An attorney with a San Francisco law firm that focuses on employment law has pleaded guilty to felony hit-and-run and misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter for striking and killing a bicyclist in Dublin two years ago and then fleeing the scene. Spencer Freeman Smith, 35, who lives in San Ramon, entered his plea in Alameda County Superior Court on Tuesday.

When Judge Kevin Murphy sentences Smith on Feb. 20, he will have the discretion to place the attorney on probation or send him to state prison for up to four years. Smith was arrested on May 17, 2012, after Dublin police identified him as the owner of a recently-purchased black 2012 Mercedes-Benz CLS550 connected with a crash on Dougherty and Fall Creek roads two days earlier that claimed the life of 57-year-old Bo Hu, who was visiting from China.

Dublin police said Smith’s car suffered extensive windshield and front-end damage and was missing parts that were recovered at the scene of the crash. The website of Smith’s law firm, Smith Patten, says he has “earned a reputation for being one of the top young employment litigators in Northern California” and has settled seven-figure cases with some Fortune 500 companies as well as six-figure settlements with and other Fortune 500 companies.

The website says Smith has represented a wide range of clients in many different types of situations: whistle blowing, wage-and-hour law, retaliation, sexual harassment, wrongful termination and gender, disability, race, sexual orientation and age discrimination.

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