Rodgers added that the law firm that provides municipal attorney services to the town, the Danbury office of Cohen and Wolf, has offered to perform some work pro bono. The same goes for the Milford firm of Berchem, Moses, & Devlin, which represents Newtown schools.
Ellen Plasil, a Newtown lawyer who focuses on divorce mediation, said that she would offer legal help on a pro bono basis if someone needs it. "If someone needs help with this and it's legal and it's something I can do competently, then I will do it," she said.
Plasil said that the tragedy had a major impact on her and her clients. With the exception of one case, whom she described as a family "in crisis," she cancelled all her mediation sessions last week. She said she found herself trying to cancel appointments at the same time clients were trying to contact her to cancel. "I think if you're just a human being...this has to tear your heart open," Plasil said.
Michael Paes practices with his wife, Fern, on 4 Washington Ave., in Sandy Hook, about a quarter of a mile from the elementary school. He said that last week, after people paid their respects at the makeshift shrines outside the school, they would often stop into his firm to share their feelings. "We had a number of the townspeople just come in and talk," Paes said. "It's been a tough week."
Paes added that "anytime during the day, we can look out and see people," at the memorial site.
TV crews wanted to use his firm's parking lot to set up shop, but he would not allow it. They even offered to pay, but he still refused. Paes said he hopes everything gets back to normal soon.
"That's what the town needs," Paes said. "That's what the families need"