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The Largest Criminal Defense Law Firm in Lethbridge

Connolly Shurtz offers a full range of criminal defense services to both private and legal aid clients throughout Lethbridge, Cardston, Taber, Brooks, Medicine Hat, Fort Macleod, and Pincher Creek. Our team of lawyers and traffic agents ensures that our clients receive a full legal defense to a wide range of criminal and quasi-criminal matters. With nearly 50 years of combined defense experience, Claudia R. Connolly and Darcy Shurtz are here to help you with support from Lawyers Miranda Hlady, Vincent Guinan and Colin Koerselman.

Claudia Connolly

Claudia has established herself as a highly-respected and recognized name in Southern Alberta’s legal community through her 30 years of experience practicing criminal defense in Lethbridge, and the surrounding communities.

Claudia Connolly
Claudia Connolly
Criminal Defense Lawyer in Lethbridge, AB

Over the course of her 30 years in practice, Claudia has represented clients in complex matters in all areas of the criminal law, and uses this wealth of experience to benefit her clients as well as other members of her firm. Presently, Claudia’s practice is largely resolution focused, which means working tirelessly to ensure her clients receive the best possible sentences.

Claudia can be seen advocating for her clients in criminal court on a daily basis. Claudia is committed to providing the highest level of legal assistance to some of the most marginalized groups in our society, and her dedication to this cause was recognized when she received the Legal Aid Alberta Access to Justice Award in 2008. Claudia prides herself on developing excellent relationships with her clientele, and ensuring that she obtains the best outcome possible on both a legal, and a personal level.

Claudia was born and raised in rural Manitoba, and began her post-secondary education at Brandon University. Shortly thereafter, Claudia relocated to Lethbridge, where she finished her Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Lethbridge in 1988. Claudia then went on to attend law school at the University of Calgary, completing her LLB in 1991. Claudia was the recipient of multiple Academic Awards throughout her university career, and was able to do so while maintaining employment and raising her two young daughters. Claudia was proud to accept the Queen’s Counsel appointment in March of 2020 and takes this responsibility with great pride.

As a long-time resident of Lethbridge, Claudia remains an active member of the community, and takes a keen interest in participating in and learning from Traditional Indigenous events and ceremonies on the Piikani and Kainai Reservations. Claudia makes annual contributions various to community initiatives, including sponsoring the Kainai Little Chiefs children’s hockey team for the past two years. Claudia also previously served as a member of the Board of Directors for the John Howard Society.

To retain or book a free consultation with Claudia, please call our office at (403) 329-8188, or email Claudia at

Darcy Shurtz

Darcy Shurtz was admitted to the Alberta Bar in 2016. He was born and raised in the Lethbridge area and attended Athabasca University before obtaining a law degree in Western Michigan. Darcy was awarded a Juris Doctor (magna cum laude) from Western Michigan University in 2014. Darcy completed his articles with Connolly & Associates where he has subsequently been practicing as an associate lawyer.

Darcy Shurtz
Darcy Shurtz
Criminal Defense Lawyer in Lethbridge, AB

Darcy practices in all aspects of criminal defense and works vigorously to defend the rights of his clients. Darcy appears regularly in criminal court in Lethbridge, Taber, Fort Macleod, and Cardston. Impaired driving, assault, property offenses, and drug-related offenses are some of the areas Darcy has significant experience and expertise.

To retain or book a free consultation with Darcy, please call our office at (403) 329-8188, or email Darcy at

Miranda Hlady

Miranda was likely Canada’s youngest lawyer at the time of her Yukon Territory bar call in 2012. She completed a rotation for the Public Prosecution Service of Canada during her articles and has worked for her entire career almost exclusively in the area of criminal defence. Miranda has advocated for clients at all levels of court in Alberta including the Court of Appeal and has represented a client as Lead Counsel on an Intervenor Application before the Supreme Court of Canada.

Miranda Hlady Lethbridge Lawyer
Miranda Hlady Criminal Defense Lawyer

Miranda is active in her community as a volunteer. She was a 2012 recipient of the Maritime Law Book Award, a 2013 recipient of a Volunteer Excellence Award from Volunteer Lethbridge, a 2014 YWCA Young Woman of Promise, a 2017 recipient of a Leadership Award from the Federation of Asian-Canadian Lawyers, a 2018 recipient of a Native Counselling Services of Alberta Service Award, a 2018 recipient of a Liberty Award from British Columbia Civil Liberties and a 2021 recipient of the Lethbridge Legal Guidance Lawyer of the Year Award.

She currently serves as the Secretary of the Lethbridge Criminal Defence Lawyers’ Association, serves on the National Criminal Lawyers’ Association Accessibility Committee and serves on the Legal Aid Alberta Roster Representation Committee.

Miranda worked for three years as a Paralegal Instructor in Lethbridge, Alberta and currently works as an Assessor for the Law Society of Alberta Capstone Program.

To retain or book a free consultation with Miranda, please call our office at (403) 329-8188, or email Miranda at

Vincent Guinan

Since joining Connolly Shurtz as a Student-at-law, Vincent has worked tirelessly to establish his professional reputation by acting as an aggressive advocate for his clients. During his 8 years of experience as a criminal defense lawyer, Vincent has sharpened his skills as a trial lawyer, and has secured not-guilty verdicts and lenient sentences for countless clients, many of whom who were facing serious and complex criminal charges.

Vincent Guinan
Vincent Guinan
Criminal Defense Lawyer in Lethbridge, AB

Vincent has successfully defended clients against charges including second-degree murder, sexual assault, break and enter, assault, drug trafficking and possession, and many more. Vincent has also diversified his legal practice by representing clients in quasi-criminal regulatory proceedings arising from legislation such as the Firearms Act, the Species at Risk Act, the Fisheries Act, the Occupational Health and Safety Act, and the Customs Act. Vincent’s practice revolves around his ability to effectively assist clients with all manner of charges, and to provide compassionate, client-focused service throughout the process.

Before his admission to the Bar by the Law Society of Alberta, Vincent received a Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in History from the University of Alberta, and then shortly thereafter, proceeded to complete a Bachelor’s of Commerce Degree at the University of Saskatchewan.

After obtaining these two undergraduate degrees, Vincent was awarded his law degree from the internationally renowned law program at Bond University in Australia. After law school, Vincent returned home to Southern Alberta, and he has since spent his career vigorously advocating for his clients against a broad variety of criminal and regulatory charges.

Vincent’s work as a trial lawyer has resulted in numerous published court decisions recognizing his exemplary advocacy work, and has solidified his status as one of Southern Alberta’s most prominent criminal defense lawyers.

To retain or to book a free consultation with Vincent, please call our office at (403) 329-8188, or email Vincent at

Colin Koerselman

Colin was born in Lethbridge and grew up in Coaldale. After completing a Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Lethbridge, he then attended Law School at the University of Calgary, graduating with a JD in 2015. He was admitted to the Alberta Bar in 2016.

Colin Koerselman
Colin Koerselman Criminal Defense Lawyer in Lethbridge, AB

Since being called to the Alberta Bar, Colin has represented clients in diverse areas of law, appearing regularly in the Provincial Court of Alberta and the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench. Colin’s current practice focus is Family Law, Child Welfare Law and Criminal Defense matters. Colin works hard to assist all clients to understand their rights and navigate the court system by providing high quality legal advice. His client-focused approach will assist client in resolving their matters in an efficient and cost-effective manner.

To retain or book a free consultation with Colin, please call our office at (403) 329-8188, or email Colin at