Lucian Lincoln "Lin" Wood, Jr. (born October 19, 1952 in Raleigh, North Carolina) is a high-profile American attorney based in Atlanta, Georgia. He represented Richard Jewell, the security guard falsely accused in the Centennial Olympic Park bombing in Atlanta in 1996. Wood's representation of Richard Jewell propelled Wood from a personal injury lawyer to be known as one of the top libel, defamation and First Amendment lawyers in the U. S. earning him the title of "Attorney for the Damned".
Lin Wood was raised in Georgia after moving to Macon, Georgia, at age 3. Wood has stated in news accounts that his family struggled financially with frequent episodes of domestic abuse involving his parents. He has one sibling, Diane Wood Stern born February 1951 and a half sister, Linda Martin born in 1946. After a school dance, the then 16-year-old Wood returned home to find his father had beaten his mother to death. L. Lin Wood Sr. pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter, a charge reduced from first-degree murder. He served a little over two years in prison. Wood has stated that it was this experience that solidified his earlier decision to become a lawyer.
Wood lived with friends and graduated from Mark Smith High School in Macon, Georgia in 1970. Per his profile from Powell Goldstein LLC he graduated from Mercer University cum laude in 1974 and graduated from Walter F. George School of Law cum laude in 1977.
For the next nineteen years from 1977 to 1996 Wood established a reputation in the State of Georgia as someone who could win large settlements—and—judgments primarily in medical malpractice cases.
Defamation and libel lawsuits
Wood's first libel and defamation client was Richard Jewell, the security guard falsely accused in the Centennial Olympic Park bombing in Atlanta in 1996.
Jewell was quickly followed by other high-profile cases the next being John and Patsy Ramsey, the parents of JonBenét Ramsey, had several defamation lawsuits ensued since JonBenét's murder. L. Lin Wood. was the plaintiff's lead attorney for John and Patsy Ramsey and their son Burke, and has prosecuted defamation claims on their behalf against St. Martin's Press, Time Inc., The Fox News Channel, American Media, Inc., Star, The Globe, Court TV and The New York Post. John and Patsy Ramsey were also sued in two separate defamation lawsuits arising from the publication of their book, The Death of Innocence, brought by two individuals named in the book as having been investigated by Boulder police as suspects in JonBenét's murder. The Ramseys were defended in those lawsuits by Lin Wood and three other Atlanta attorneys, James C. Rawls, Eric P. Schroeder, and S. Derek Bauer, who obtained dismissal of both lawsuits including an in-depth decision by U.S. District Court Judge Julie Carnes that "abundant evidence" in the murder case pointed to an intruder having committed the crime.
In November 2006, Rod Westmoreland, a friend of JonBenét Ramsey's father, filed a defamation suit against Keith Greer, who posted a message on an Internet forum using the pseudonym "undertheradar". Greer had accused Westmoreland of participating in the kidnapping and murder. Greer has defended his statement.
Wood went on to represent former U.S. Congressman Gary Condit, and the alleged victim in the Kobe Bryant case. He has also represented fellow attorney Howard K. Stern in defamation lawsuits against John O'Quinn, lawyer for Virgie Arthur, the mother of Anna Nicole Smith and against Rita Cosby, the author of Blonde Ambition, The Untold Story of Anna Nicole Smith.
Wood more recently was hired by presidential candidate Herman Cain, in his efforts to fight off sexual harassment charges.
Other Significant lawsuits
On November 30, 2012, CNN covered the DaVita Inc. Medicare and Medicaid Fraud Lawsuit pending in which Wood is a lead attorney for the plaintiffs. That lawsuit settlement in 2015 was nearly $500 Million plus attorneys fees.
Wood lives in Atlanta Georgia and has four children, two are attorneys. Wood and Mercer University announced a one million dollar fund set up by Wood at his Alma Mater to be called the "L. Lin Wood Fund for the Enhancement of Mercer Law School".
Coverage in newspapers and books
The Atlanta Business Chronicle reports that "Wood has 28 years of experience as a trial lawyer focusing on civil litigation, representing individuals and corporations as plaintiffs and defendants in tort and business cases involving claims of significant damage. He also has extensive experience in First Amendment litigation and management of the media in high-profile cases. He was the lead civil attorney for Richard Jewell related to reporting about Jewell in connection with the 1996 bombing of Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta; the attorney for John and Patsy Ramsey and their son in matters relating to the 1996 murder of JonBenét Ramsey in Boulder, Colo.; the attorney for former U. S. Congressman Gary Condit over the May 2001 abduction and murder of Chandra Levy in Washington; co-counsel in the civil action in Colorado against NBA star Kobe Bryant; lead counsel for MedQuest Associates Inc. and J.P. Morgan Partners LLC in a class action in Atlanta dealing with health-care issues; and lead counsel for AirTran in defamation litigation against the Cleveland, Ohio, newspaper The Plain Dealer."
Dary Matera described Wood's successes in the Richard Jewell case: "Richard Jewell hired himself some crack libel attorneys, and they've been hammering the media ever since. So far, Atlanta lawyers L. Lin Wood and Wayne Grant have torched NBC, CNN, a community college where Jewell once worked, and other media outlets for more than $2 million and counting. And that doesn't include the undisclosed "six figure" fee they secured for the movie story. The biggest lawsuits - against the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and some other major media outlets - are still pending."
A 2008 book by Jim Fisher described Wood's role in the Ramsey case, which led to the couple's exoneration: "In 1999, after absorbing an enormous amount of abuse from the media, the Ramseys went on the offensive. They hired a more aggressive attorney, L. Lin Wood, and published a book, The Death of Innocence: JonBenét's Parents Tell Their Story."
The Los Angeles Times described Wood's role in the Kobe Bryant case: "The woman allegedly raped by Kobe Bryant has hired renowned attorney L. Lin Wood, a libel specialist who has represented such clients as the family of JonBenet Ramsey, former Rep. Gary Condit and Richard Jewell in lawsuits against the media."