About Our Criminal Defense Law Firm

In 1996, John R. Murphy opened his own law firm in Rapid City, SD. At that time he decided to only represent people suspected of criminal activity, and to limit his case load so he could treat each client as an individual. By adhering to these founding principles, Murphy Law Office is able to devote the time and attention to each file without being distracted by a large case load or the demands of having to juggle many kinds of cases (divorces, etc.) at one time. Every case represents an opportunity to serve each client to the fullest and find a favorable solution with the best possible outcome.

At Murphy Law Office, P.C., you are more than a file. We pride ourselves on being responsive and attentive. When a client hires Murphy Law Office, their file is opened immediately and all correspondence and phone calls are returned within one business day. Appointments can be scheduled on short notice, meaning clients stay informed at all times. Criminal defense is John Murphy’s passion, and his sole area of emphasis. When your future is at stake, trust your case to South Dakota’s leading criminal defense lawyer.


John R. Murphy has undergraduate degrees in political philosophy and political science from Syracuse University.  He received his law degree from Georgetown University in 1992.  After receiving his law degree, Mr. Murphy clerked for the Honorable Donald J. Porter, United States District Court Judge for the District of South Dakota.  He was then selected as a Skadden Fellow for a two year fellowship at Black Hills Legal Services, where he acted as senior staff attorney and the director of the Indian Law Project. In 1996, Mr. Murphy established his private practice law firm.  He has emphasized criminal defense since that time.  He has been published multiple times in books, articles, and law reviews.  Mr. Murphy handles all levels of criminal cases in both state and federal courts, and at the trial and appellate levels.  Mr. Murphy is a member of the following organizations: National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers; American Bar Association (Criminal Justice Section); South Dakota State Bar Association; South Dakota Trial Lawyers Association; South Dakota Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers; and, the Black Hills Criminal Defense Bar Association.  Mr. Murphy serves on the Advisory Committee of the Pennington County Public Defender’s Office and the Criminal Justice Act Panel Selection Committee.


Rebecca Beer graduated from Stevens High School in Rapid City, attended South Dakota State University in Brookings and graduated from Western Dakota Technical Institute in Rapid City.  She obtained her Associate in Applied Science Paralegal Degree in 2000.  Ms. Beer interned at the Pennington County State’s Attorney’s Office and from there began her legal career and experience in criminal law.  Ms. Beer has over 16 years of paralegal experience in the Rapid City area.  Ms. Beer has worked in various legal areas to include criminal law, civil litigation, family law, adoption, abuse and neglect, juvenile, business, real estate, wills and personal injury. Ms. Beer’s legal background is mainly in criminal law working on many cases that range from citations to misdemeanors and felonies, including but not limited to: driving under the influence, simple assault/domestic violence, possession and drug cases, child pornography, child abuse, sexual assault and murder cases.  Ms. Beer has worked with numerous attorneys and staff in various agencies in Rapid City.  She has knowledge of the State and Federal court systems and new e-filing systems.  Ms. Beer has assisted in court trials and jury trials.  She has State and Federal court trial experience. Ms. Beer works on every case from open to close.  She meets with clients, maintains our client case files, prepares pleadings to be filed with the court, prepares discovery notebooks, reviews audio and video recordings, prepares CDs of documents and photographs for client review, keeps calendars and deadlines up to date and provides other general office duties.  Ms. Beer was previously at Murphy Law Office for four years and has recently been back with Murphy Law Office for over 2 years.  Ms. Beer provides quality assistance to our clients and helps them get through their legal matters with the understanding that every case and every client is different.