Firm Overview

I am a Certified Specialist in Criminal Law handling complex habeas capital litigation and capital trial work and other serious felonies and misdemeanors. (DUI)

I also represent and advise criminally charged clients who are collaterally involved in administrative proceedings re DMV License suspension hearings, Fish and Game license revocations and professional licensing board sanctions (doctors, dentists, attorneys).

I was appointed by the California Supreme Court in 1993 as habeas counsel in a capital appeal which is ongoing. Currently I am practicing criminal law in Santa Barbara County, with emphasis on serious felony representation including assisting the Santa Barbara County Public Defender's Office as Keenan counsel on 2 separate capital murder cases and most recently was privately retained in two capital cases, one through the grand jury indictment and an LWOP case through trial.

Example cases

United States v. Michael Michaels 796 Fed.2nd 1112, 9th Cir. 1986; cert.denied 449 U.S., 1038 93 L.Ed. 2nd 845.

Main Office

924 Anacapa St.
Suite 1-T
Santa Barbara  CA  93101

  • (805) 962-5103
  • (805) 730-3313


Free Initial Consultation?

1/2 hour free initial consultation

Services Offered For Fixed Fees?


Hourly Rates

The hourly rate is negotiable.

Office Information

Office Hours

Monday through Friday
8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
I am available by telephone after hours.

Office Manager


Emergency After Hours


Languages Spoken

English, Spanish

Criminal Defense
California criminal defense lawyer Robert F. Landheer has over 27 years of experience representing clients throughout Santa Barbara, Ventura, and San Luis Obispo counties. Mr. Landheer helps individuals, families, and juvenile defendants.
As an experienced criminal defense attorney, Mr. Landheer is accustomed to working with people in the midst of personal crises. He strives to guide you and your family through this stressful time, managing not only the procedural issues at play in criminal cases, but the psychological ones as well. Mr. Landheer works to build long-term relationships based on trust with his clients, and is dedicated to making them feel secure in the knowledge that their matters will be handled professionally and confidentially. Mr. Landheer has been certified by the California Board of Legal Specialization as a Specialist in Criminal Law since 1997, and regularly deals with the press in high-profile cases, appearing on such national news outlets as MSNBC and CBS, and in such publications as USA Today. - See more at:

How did your firm decide on the primary area of practice(s)?

I chose criminal law because that is the one area where all of our constitutional rights are defined.

What is your firm's point of view regarding clients educating themselves on legal issues?

I believe in fully and candidly discussing all aspects of a client's case including the consequences of selecting different options as whether to go to trial, plea bargain, etc.

Is your firm willing to review documents prepared by clients?

Absolutely. I insist that the clients prepare a narrative of what happened.

Is your firm willing to coach clients who want to represent themselves?

Depending upon the facts and circumstances of each individual case, the answer is yes.

Robert Landheer

Robert Landheer obtained his Bachelor of Arts Degree from Oberlin College in 1970 and afterwards attended New College School of Law of California where he received his Juris Doctorate Degree. As a criminal defense attorney he has over 25 years of criminal defense litigation experience and is a Certified Specialist in Criminal Law by the California Board of Legal Specialization. He has represented numerous individuals in a variety of criminal matters. He strives to build long-term relationships with clients based fundamentally on trust and confidentiality. Not only does he handle all procedural issues but he has helped clients with psychological issues in the midst of personal crises.
  • Bar Number: 101687
    California , 1981
  • New College School of Law of California
    J.D. , 1979
    San Francisco, CA
  • Oberlin College
    B.A. , 1970
    Oberlin, OH
    European History

Nicole Ricotta

Nicole K. Ricotta is a native of Santa Barbara, California. She is a graduate of Loyola Marymount University where she received her Bachelors Degree in 2005. She received her Paralegal Certificate in 2007 from the University of California Santa Barbara.

While in law school she worked as a Paralegal for at the Law Office of Robert Landheer. She also interned at the Santa Barbara Public Defenders office from 2010 to 2012.

Nicole received her Juris Doctorate from the Santa Barbara College of Law and was admitted to the California State Bar in 2012.

Nicole is currently the managing attorney at the Law Office of Robert Landheer.

She represents clients charged with misdemeanors and serious felony cases, including assault & battery cases, domestic violence cases, drug possession cases, DUI cases, 1st degree murder and other serious violent felony cases.

She is the office attorney representing clients seeking post conviction immigration relief.
  • Bar Number: 283370
    California , 2012
  • Loyola Marymount University
    B.A. in Sociology , 2005
  • Santa Barbara College of Law
    Jurid Doctorate , 2012

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