NewsLocal NewsI-Team Investigations


Stand your ground lead attorney John Trevena charged with domestic violence

Trevena: police are incompetent, seek vengeance
Posted at 7:53 PM, Mar 12, 2019

CLEARWATER, Fla. — The high-profile attorney in the Michael Drejka stand your ground case, John Trevena, found himself behind bars at the Pinellas County Jail after he was arrested Monday night, accused of battering his ex-wife.

In an orange jump suit, prominent defense attorney John Trevena represented himself at a bond hearing Tuesday morning.

Largo police say he pushed and kicked his ex-wife at her apartment Monday afternoon.

We were waiting when Trevena got out of jail.

“I spent the last 18 hours incarcerated over nothing. The charges will be dropped. I will be vindicated,” Trevena said.

“We got into a verbal altercation, part of it she may have video recorded. There was never any physical violence,” Trevena said.

The police report said Trevena shoved and kicked Meredith Trevena, his ex-wife who he recently divorced.

Trevena said they argued over a rug he said belonged to him.

“It was valued at nearly $50,000. I had just had it restored,” he said.

Trevena is the lead attorney for Michael Drejka, who is facing a manslaughter charge after fatally shooting another man over a handicapped parking space at a convenience store in July.

“Why would this have anything to do with his case at all? This is a private issue between me and my ex-wife and a police department who is seeking vengeance for all the times I've sued them in the past and embarrassed them for all of their incompetence before,” Trevena said.

Trevena is not the first member of Drejka's legal team to be arrested.

Attorney Lysa Clifton resigned after she was arrested twice for driving under the influence.

A third attorney, Wil Flores, also was arrested for DUI.

“So three of us had arrests. Arrests don't mean anything. Convictions is what counts,” said Trevena.

Former judge and law school professor Jeff Swartz disagrees.

“There is a potential problem, depending upon the facts and circumstances,” said Swartz.

Swartz says if the team loses the stand-your-ground case, it could be grounds for an appeal for the man on trial.

“If you're being investigated, is your representation of your client going to be as zealous as it would be otherwise… having fear of angering the prosecutors or police more,” he said.

If you have a story you’d like the I-Team to investigate, contact us at