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Criminal Defense

The Kalief Browder Case: First We Blame, Then We Reform

Steven Brill | Posted 06.12.2015 | Crime
Steven Brill

At the age of 19, Kalief was released back into the world. Just this week [update timing], Mr. Browder, now 22, hung himself. He took his own life, but there are those who say it was the system that killed him.

Durst's Apparent Confession to Murder: To Be or Not to Be

Steven Brill | Posted 06.06.2015 | Crime
Steven Brill

Although there are some questions about Durst's meaning and mental state, the prejudice does not substantially outweigh its probative value of the statements. And as for the meaning, each side is free to argue their interpretation.

10 Things People Don't Understand About 'Serial' Unless You're a Criminal Attorney

Tamara Shayne Kagel | Posted 02.23.2015 | Entertainment
Tamara Shayne Kagel

I've noticed that most people listening to "Serial" don't know some key facts about the criminal justice system. Here are some of the most common misconceptions I've noticed about people's comprehension of the legal system which ultimately we are all beholden to.

'Failure to Protect' Laws Punish Victims of Domestic Violence

Adam Banner | Posted 02.03.2015 | Crime
Adam Banner

True justice is not measured by what we think we would do in a similar situation; it is measured by the law and how the law applies to certain facts. It is time to stop using the law to blame the victims, and instead find solutions that truly protect our nation's children from violence and abuse.

Hillary's Lesson: Defending a Criminal

Joel Cohen | Posted 09.13.2014 | Politics
Joel Cohen

Let's not talk about Hillary Clinton specifically -- let's examine, instead, the role of the run-of-the-mill criminal lawyer who chooses to, or is appointed to, represent an extremely unpopular defendant, or a defendant counsel believes is truly guilty.

Interrogating Terrorism Suspects and the Search for Truth

Zoe Dolan | Posted 08.21.2014 | Politics
Zoe Dolan

President Obama recently released a statement on the apprehension of Ahmed Abu Khatallah, who is alleged to have played a role in the attacks on Americans in Benghazi and is now reported to be "talking freely" without a lawyer. Are uncounseled statements by suspects a good thing?

When Art and Real Life Collide in the Courtroom

Steven Brill | Posted 07.09.2014 | Crime
Steven Brill

At an increasing rate, federal prosecutors are seeking to introduce rap videos, made by the charged defendants, as relevant evidence in their attempt to prove the elements of the crimes charged.

An Uptick in Granting Suppression Motions: Is Stop-and-Frisk to Blame?

Steven Brill | Posted 06.17.2014 | Crime
Steven Brill

So what do we have here: an increased number of decisions to suppress, but fewer incidents of public displeasure with those decisions. So are times changing? Has public opinion, and thus political and judicial policy swung in the other direction?

Maximilian Schell and How Art Imitates Life

Steven Brill | Posted 04.05.2014 | Crime
Steven Brill

The news that Austrian-born actor Maximilian Schell died yesterday got me thinking. Schell made his mark in Hollywood -- and won an Oscar -- for his role as a criminal defense attorney in the movie Judgment at Nuremberg.

An Interview With Sam Dalton, Now In His Seventh Decade Of Criminal Defense Law

Radley Balko | Posted 01.23.2014 | Politics

The year 2013 marked the 50th anniversary of two landmark Supreme Court cases in criminal defense law. In Brady v. Maryland, the Court ruled that pros...

How My Life Partner Became My Business Partner and Helped Save My Practice

Brooke Barnett | Posted 09.14.2013 | Gay Voices
Brooke Barnett

If you are asking, "How can you possibly live together, raise two kids, take care of a dog, run a household, and work together seven days a week?" I'm here to tell you that not only can it be done, but if you have the opportunity to do it, you should!

To Defend a Terrorist: Reflections on Reid, Tsarnaev and How I Got From There to Here

Tamar Birckhead | Posted 07.03.2013 | Crime
Tamar Birckhead

In my last life, I worked as a federal public defender in Boston and had the occasion to represent Richard Reid, the failed or would-be shoe-bomber.

Jerry Sandusky Is No Judge of Talent on Defense

David Coleman | Posted 08.24.2012 | Crime
David Coleman

As the trial wound down to its inevitable conclusion, Jerry Sandusky's attorney Joe Amendola topped all his prior gaffes and professional missteps with his comments about the inevitability of a guilty verdict.


USA Today | Posted 10.30.2011 | Black Voices

JACKSON, Miss. – Programs that provide free legal aid to the poor are laying off employees, cutting services and increasingly turning away people wh...

Mob Mentality

Andrea Lyon | Posted 09.18.2011 | Crime
Andrea Lyon

What is troubling is the public's fascination with the Casey Anthony case, the need to make her a villain, and how the media have helped feed the mob mentality.

Radley Balko

A Letter Of Thanks From Cory Maye | Radley Balko | Posted 09.01.2011 | Politics

Cory Maye, the man sentenced to death in 2004 for shooting and killing a police officer during a during a botched drug raid in 2001, agreed to a plea ...

Gov. Barbour Must Free Scott Sisters Serving Life for 11 Dollar Robbery

Anthony Papa | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Anthony Papa

For those like the Scott sisters who have fallen through the cracks of the cruel criminal justice system, their only hope to regain their freedom is through public pressure on elected officials.

Supreme Court Ruling Speaks of a New Kind of Public Defense

Robin Steinberg | Posted 05.25.2011 | New York
Robin Steinberg

In a single bold stroke last week, the Supreme Court redefined what criminal defense should be.