Sandra Musumeci brings an impressive professional pedigree, a wealth of practical experience, and tremendous versatility to RSHC, having successfully practiced as a prosecutor and defense attorney, in criminal and civil contexts, and in the public and private sectors. Equally at ease drafting a brief, advocating to a jury, or presenting to executives or government officials, she brings a strategic and practical approach to problem-solving, and she possesses a winning combination of sound judgment, an innate sense of justice, and a tireless work ethic.
Sandy’s practice encompasses criminal defense work, general litigation, and corporate counseling. She represents companies, individuals, educational institutions, and not-for-profit organizations in a range of matters, including government, internal, and Title IX investigations, regulatory inquiries, and business disputes. Her clients include corporations looking to uncover and remediate staff misconduct, organizations managing crises and responding to media fallout, and colleges and universities defending their administrative processes in discrimination and Title IX litigations. She also proactively counsels clients regarding risk management and mitigation involving a range of compliance and emerging issues, including those related to employment, sexual misconduct and harassment, and discrimination.
Immediately prior to joining RSHC, Sandy helped to create and run the Office of the Inspector General for the New York City Police Department (OIG-NYPD) for the city of New York’s Department of Investigation. As Deputy Inspector General, she developed protocols, cultivated relationships, and managed a staff of investigators, analysts, auditors, and attorneys to investigate, evaluate, and issue reports and recommendations about NYPD’s policies and operations, all while navigating City politics amidst the competing voices of community advocates, unions, government, and the media.
Before her most recent public service, Sandy was a partner at a major international law firm, where she represented organizations in complex commercial disputes and advised companies and individuals in criminal, governmental, and internal investigations and proceedings. She also maintained an active pro bono practice representing inmates in civil rights cases and helping domestic violence victims obtain lawful immigration status.
Prior to that, Sandy served as an Assistant District Attorney in the New York County District Attorney’s Office under Robert M. Morgenthau, where she investigated and prosecuted felony street crimes, sexual assaults, and domestic violence cases. As a prosecutor, Sandy tried 18 criminal jury trials, including two homicides, and conducted scores of pre-trial hearings and grand jury presentations. She also trained and managed junior prosecutors as Criminal Court Supervisor.
Hon. John C. Lifland, United States District Judge, U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey (2000-2001)
Representative Engagements – White Collar Defense and Investigations
- Representing individuals before the U.S. Department of Justice, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the New York District Attorney’s Office, and other law enforcement and administrative agencies.
- Defending executive facing federal conspiracy and fraud indictment in connection with business pursuits.
- Defending medical professionals in federal health care fraud investigations.
- Obtaining dismissal of charges against a professional athlete falsely accused of criminal conduct.
- Conducting internal investigations and counseling the global leadership of a Fortune Global 500 corporation in connection with its internal policies against the backdrop of U.S. litigation and regulatory inquiries.
- Securing the dismission of charges against a developmentally-disabled teenager wrongfully accused of robbery.
Representative Engagements – Higher Education
- Successfully obtaining the dismissal of claims filed against a university in litigation challenging the school’s Title IX investigative and disciplinary process.
- Advising colleges, universities, and private K-12 schools on compliance with federal and state regulations, including Title IX.
- Investigating allegations of sexual assault, sexual harassment, and other misconduct by tenured faculty at a public university.
- Conducting witness tampering investigation in connection with research integrity inquiry at private university.
- Counseling families of secondary students facing school disciplinary proceedings.
Representative Engagements – Class Actions
- Coordinating the nationwide class notice effort for two ground-breaking multi-billion-dollar class action settlements.
- Securing summary judgment on behalf of a transportation carrier defending against a class action suit involving one of its customer loyalty programs.
- Defending individual client in securities class action brought by purported class of shareholders against former corporate managers based on allegations of fraudulent and misleading public statements.
- Providing a corporate client with legal advice and support regarding external communications and media issues related to high-profile class action litigations and settlements.
Representative Engagements – Commercial Litigation
- Successfully negotiating a financial settlement on behalf of a small business in a breach of contract suit based on a former client’s unauthorized disclosure of proprietary information to a third-party competitor
- Defending former pharmaceutical executive in securities fraud litigation related to DOJ investigation of alleged kickbacks and off-label sales in the United States.
- Obtaining partial summary judgment and a favorable settlement for a client after extensive deposition practice in a federal mass action litigation arising from a failed real estate development.
- First-chairing jury trial in New York state court defending a closely-held corporation in a $30 million suit brought by former shareholders, successfully defeating claims for fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and punitive damages.
Representative Engagements – Labor and Employment
- Investigating claims of racial discrimination and favoritism by high-ranking executive at public company.
- Achieving a full dismissal of defamation claims in a suit filed against a company manager related to employment decisions.
- Achieving a favorable settlement through mediation on behalf of a real estate firm defending against wrongful termination claims brought by a former agent.
- Negotiating employment agreements and separation agreements on behalf of individuals and companies.
Harvard Law School, J.D., 2000
Princeton University, Princeton School of Public and International Affairs, A.B., 1994, magna cum laude
U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
American Bar Association
Association of Title IX Administrators (ATIXA) – Certified Civil Rights Investigator, Level IV
New York City Bar Association
Women's White Collar Defense Association (WWCDA)
Honors & Awards
New York Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters (2020)
“Considerations for Independent and Faith-Based Schools Receiving Funds Under the CARES Act,” (co-author) RSHC Client Alert (April 2020)
“The Transparency – Litigation – Liability Connection: Current and Emerging Issues,” (panelist) National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement (NACOLE) 2016 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, NM (September 29, 2016)
“Civilian Oversight: Comparative and International Perspectives,” (panelist) Canadian Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement (CACOLE) Annual Conference, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada (May 10, 2016)
Pro Bono Activities
- Representing inmates in civil rights suits against municipalities.
- Submitting U-visa applications and VAWA petitions on behalf of domestic violence victims.
- Defending low-income persons in criminal matters.
- Counseling non-profit organizations in legal and compliance issues.
- Serving as a judge for the National Moot Court Competition at the New York City Bar.
Princeton Quadrangle Club, Graduate Board Member
Princeton University, Alumni Admissions Interviewer
Residential Cooperative Association, Board Member