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The Bronx Defenders Announcements

The Bronx Defenders Mourns Passing of Brooklyn DA Ken Thompson

New York – The Bronx Defenders mourns the death of Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson,  who passed away last night after a battle with cancer. “We extend our deepest condolences to Mr. Thompson’s family, friends, and staff,” said Robin Steinberg, Executive Director of The Bronx Defenders. “A staunch advocate for criminal justice reform, Ken Thompson…

Bronx Defenders Lawsuit Challenges Lack of Transparency in NYPD Property Seizures

Contact: media@bronxdefenders.org August 4, 2016, New York – Today, The Bronx Defenders filed a lawsuit in the Supreme Court of the State of New York against the New York Police Department, arguing the department has violated New York’s Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) by refusing to provide relevant information pertaining to its policies and procedures…

Bronx DA Agrees to Property Seizure Reforms in Response to Bronx Defenders Lawsuit

Contact: media@bronxdefenders.org July 26, 2016, New York – The City of New York and The Bronx Defenders have requested a six-month stay of the federal class action lawsuit Encarnacion v. City of New York after the Bronx District Attorney’s Office agreed to implement a series of reforms to ensure the NYPD promptly releases personal property…

NYPD Asks New Yorkers to Weigh in on Body-Worn Camera Policy

The New York Police Department (NYPD) is planning a large body-worn camera (BWC) experiment involving 1,000 cameras at precincts all over the City, and is seeking public input to develop the policies that will guide officers using the cameras. This pilot program emerged in part from the class action lawsuits in which the court found the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk…

Lawsuit Challenges NYPD’s Policy of Unlawfully Keeping People’s Cash and Property

Contact: media@bronxdefenders.org The Bronx Defenders Seeks Class Cert. in Property Retrieval Suit June 3rd, 2016, New York – The Bronx Defenders filed an amended complaint today in Encarnacion v. City of New York, and will ask a federal judge to grant class certification in their lawsuit challenging the NYPD’s unconstitutional practice of retaining people’s property…

BxD’s Runa Rajagopal Receives 2016 New York City Bar Association Legal Services Award

The Bronx Defenders is proud to congratulate Runa Rajagopal, director of our Civil Action Practice, for receiving a 2016 New York City Bar Association Legal Services Award! Runa was one of five honorees who received this distinguished award for her outstanding work and dedication as a public defender. The Legal Services Awards were established to recognize the efforts…

BxD’s Annie Pineda to speak at 2016 Equal Justice Conference

On May 12, 2016, Annie Pineda, Director of Pro Bono at The Bronx Defenders, will speak at the 2016 Equal Justice Conference in a panel entitled “Getting to Know You, Getting to Know All about You: What Legal Services Organizations and Law Firms Should Know about Working Together.” From the organizers: “This session will offer insider…

Groundbreaking Federal Lawsuit Challenges Epidemic of Delay in Bronx Criminal Court

Contact: media@bronxdefenders.org Broken System Undermines Right to Speedy Trial and Due Process for Thousands of People Charged with Low-Level Offenses, Causing Significant Social and Economic Hardships NEW YORK (May 10, 2016)  – A federal class action lawsuit was filed today against Governor Andrew Cuomo and the administrators of New York State’s Unified Court System for…

Let Them Work

Emily Galvin, an attorney in our Criminal Defense Practice, published the following piece in Slate about the need to rethink prison employment.  Most people are at least intuitively aware of the connection between poverty and prison. As Bryan Stevenson, the founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative, has said, too often the opposite of poverty…

BxD Social Workers and Advocates to present at the 2016 NOFSW Conference

Social workers and civil legal advocates from The Bronx Defenders will present the following two workshops at the 2016 National Organization of Forensic Social Work (NOFSW) Conference in New Orleans, LA, on June 17-19, 2016. Saturday, June 18 (3:15-4:45) Developing Written Advocacy Skills: Persuasion and Disruption This workshop will provide instruction on how to develop…

Join Us for Our Client Emergency Fund Spring Fundraiser on April 20!

Join us on Wednesday, April 20 from 6:00-9:00 pm at Drexler’s, 9 Avenue A, for the Bronx Defenders’ Client Emergency Fund Spring Fundraiser! All proceeds raised benefit our Client Emergency Fund, which provides small-scale, quick donations directly to our clients in moments of crisis. Year after year, our advocates observe the same issues coming up for our clients’ families. As children…

U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor Speaks at The Bronx Defenders

On Monday, January 25th, The Bronx Defenders hosted U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor for an evening of conversation at its justice campus in the South Bronx. Local community members, staff members and supporters of The Bronx Defenders were present. The conversation between Robin Steinberg, Executive Director of The Bronx Defenders, and Justice Sotomayor…

The Center for Holistic Defense Training and Technical Sites

The Center for Holistic Defense provides in-depth, hands-on support or technical assistance to individual offices and defender systems seeking concrete guidance in realizing the vision of holistic defense. Each year, The Center for Holistic Defense releases a Request for Proposals (RFP), soliciting applications from defender offices nationwide to receive six months of in-depth technical assistance….

The Bronx Defenders Launches the Robert P. Patterson, Jr. Mentoring Program

The Bronx Defenders is thrilled to launch the Robert P. Patterson, Jr. Mentoring Program, which will provide adult mentors to at-risk youth in the South Bronx. Using The Bronx Defenders’ collaborative team-based model, the program will broaden the mentee’s positive social network beyond a single mentor to include a team of dedicated advocates. Each mentee will…

Delegation of criminal defense attorneys from Japan visit BxD

On Monday and Tuesday, October 26 and 27, we were visited by a delegation of criminal defense attorneys from Japan. The Japanese criminal justice system will soon be instituting a system of plea bargaining for the first time, and the delegation came to learn from The Bronx Defenders – among others – about how our system works. They…

Where Criminal Defense Meets Civil Action: an Interview with Runa Rajagopal

This is the third in a series of interviews with attorneys who are pursuing social change through their work. This conversation is between Social Change editor Meghna Philip and Runa Rajagopal, a Team Leader and Supervising Attorney with the Bronx Defenders’ Civil Action Practice. Meghna Philip: You are the Supervising Attorney of the Civil Action…

Avery McNeil Presented Testimony Before the New York City Council

Bronx Defenders Criminal Defense Attorney and Coordinator for the Human Traffic Intervention Court Avery McNeil presented testimony before the New York City Council Joint Hearing of the Committee on Courts and Legal Services and the Committee on Women’s Issues on September 18th, 2015 to discuss the effectiveness of the intervention court in the Bronx and make recommendations for…

Bronx Freedom Fund awarded the 2015 National Criminal Justice Association Outstanding Criminal Justice Program Award

On Tuesday, August 4th, 2015, The Bronx Freedom Fund received the award from the National Criminal Justice Association for “outstanding criminal justice program” in the Northeast Region. Alyssa Work, Project Director of The Bronx Freedom Fund, Robin Steinberg, Executive Director of The Bronx Defenders and co-founder of The Bronx Freedom Fund, and David Feige, co-founder…

BxD Attorneys present at the 16th National Conference on Children and the Law

On July 24-25, 2015, The Bronx Defenders’ Attorneys present at the 16th National Conference on Children and the Law in Washington, DC. This conference offers targeted trial skills training for attorneys representing parents in child abuse and neglect cases through demonstrations, mock trial exercises, and ‘ask the experts’ discussions. Bronx Defenders presenting at the conference include Family Defense Attorneys Shlomit Cohen and Kate…

BxD Attorneys and Social Workers present at the 4th National Parent Attorney Conference

On July 22-23, 2015, The Bronx Defenders’ Attorneys and Social Workers presented on three panels at the 4th National Parent Attorney Conference: Achieving Justice Against the Odds in Washington, DC. Bronx Defenders presenting at the conference include Managing Director of the Family Defense Practice Emma Ketteringham, Family Defense Attorney Jessica Horan-Block, Family Defense Social Worker Caitlin Becker, and Family…

BxD’s Elizabeth Keeney presented at NLADA’s Community Oriented Defender Network Annual Conference

BxD’s Managing Director of Social Worker, Elizabeth Keeney, presented at the NLADA’s Community Oriented Defender Network Annual Conference on Wednesday, July 15th, 2015. She participated on the panel “Mandatory Reporting for Social Workers in Defender Offices.” A description of the panel: All 50 states and the District of Columbia have enacted some permutation of mandatory…