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Where Are They Now? The Prosecutors of Concord’s Axe Murderer Two Decades After Their “Test of Commitment”

On March 31, 2002, The Concord Monitor published “Trial was a test of commitment” by Stephanie Hanes. The article covered the conclusion of State v. Dwayne Thompson, the trial for the murder of Concord resident Robert Provencher who was found dead in his home with 60 hatchet wounds in 2000.

The case was notorious for Concord, NH, and you can hear all about it from the two prosecutors in our upcoming podcast or on this episode of NH Unscripted.

But the “test of commitment” was really about the lawyers in this case. In particular, the article focused on the teamwork of the two prosecutors—Brian Quirk and Jim Rosenberg.

Brian and Jim were young lawyers in the Attorney General’s office when this case came across their desks. They devoted months of their lives and countless hours to pursuing a trial victory.

Two years after achieving this victory, the colleagues, who had bonded over shared meals, late-night brainstorming, and agonizing decisions about evidence, parted ways to enter private practice as defense attorneys. Jim joined Shaheen & Gordon, while Brian joined Preti Flaherty. They continued to follow similar career trajectories, both becoming partners in their firms and often receiving the same awards for their work. For years, according to Jim, they traded back and forth the Best Lawyers® Lawyer of the Year recognitions for General Criminal and White-Collar Criminal practice.

Finally, in 2021, the colleagues/friends were reunited when Brian Quirk joined Shaheen & Gordon as a partner. They now work in offices side-by-side like the good old days, yelling jokes back and forth, reminiscing about old cases, and picking each other’s brains about new cases.

Recently, they were excited to have an opportunity to recreate their photo from the Concord Monitor article about their trial victory.

“It’s surreal to think this photo was 22 years ago,” said Jim. “We look exactly the same.”

"When it first came out, our colleagues at the Attorney General's office teased us relentlessly,” added Brian. “They joked that we had ‘Murder-Trial-Itis,’ a condition that kept us connected at the hip.”

Jim and Brian immediately shared the new photo with their families for a good laugh. Then they got back to work.

Shaheen & Gordon’s respected Criminal Defense practice leverages the experience of former prosecutors like Jim and Brian to bring a well-rounded understanding of the justice system to bear for our clients. We are proud to recognize their decades of hard work and friendship.