Redefining public defense.

The Bronx Defenders Criminal Defense

Pro Bono props from The Bronx Defenders!

The Bronx Defenders works with a number of pro bono law firms on a range of matters, from isolated client case issues to ongoing projects. This support plays a crucial role in advancing our mission to combat the systemic challenges driving indigent people into the justice system, and to redefine public defense. To highlight just…

Lindsay Ferguson and Jenny Semmel to join panel discussion at John Jay College

Bronx Defenders Social Worker Lindsay Ferguson and Criminal Defense Attorney Jenny Semmel will join a panel discussion at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, entitled “Mass Incarceration and Its Mental Health Implications,” on Thursday, March 19, 2015. The panel will be chaired by Professor George Adreopoulous, Director of the Center for International Human Rights. Jenny and…

Kate Rubin and Scott Levy testified before City Council on community policing

Bronx Defenders Managing Director of the Civil Action Practice Kate Rubin, together with Fundamental Fairness Project Director Scott Levy, submitted written comments on behalf of The Bronx Defenders to New York City Council’s Committee on Public Safety on March 3, 2015, discussing key issues to consider in community policing. The testimony describes two critical lenses through which…

Emma Ketteringham to join panel at Cardozo “Policing, Conflict, and Change” conference

Bronx Defenders Managing Director of the Family Defense Practice Emma Ketteringham will be presenting on a panel at Cardozo School of Law’s “Policing, Conflict, and Change” Conference next Thursday, March 12, 2015. The conference will be an all-day event with four panel discussions surrounding the state of policing today, the development of Fourth Amendment jurisprudence,…

City Limits: The Rap-Sheet Trap: Mistaken Arrest Records Haunt Millions

Melissa wasn’t aiming terribly high: She wanted to be a substitute teacher in New York City’s school system, a job that would combine her passion for education with a decent paycheck. Yet her modest goal had to go on hold thanks to the inability of an upstate court to verify that her almost 20-year-old shoplifting…

Kate Rubin to speak at Jon Jay panel on community consequences of incarceration

On Thursday, March 5, 2015, John Jay College of Criminal Justice will be hosting the fifth installment of the 2014-15 PRI Occasional Series on Reentry Research, highlighting issues raised by the National Academy of Sciences’ groundbreaking report, “The Growth of Incarceration in the United States: Causes and Consequences.” Bronx Defenders Managing Director of the Civil…

Runa Rajagopal to present at ABA National Summit on Collateral Consequences

Bronx Defenders Civil Action Supervising Attorney and Team Leader Runa Rajagopal will be leading a panel on Friday, February 27th at the First National Summit on Collateral Consequences in Washington, DC, presented by the ABA Criminal Justice Section in collaboration with the National Institute of Justice. Runa’s panel, entitled “Real Life Collateral Consequence: Stories from the Field,” will…

Justine Olderman Presented Testimony to City Council on Evaluating the Effectiveness of Indigent Defense

But in truth, traditional metrics fail to adequately measure effective representation…We cannot talk about caseloads, qualifications, training, or supervision without taking into account the radical change in our responsibility to our clients. We must first recognize that no matter how well organized, staffed, trained, supervised, and evaluated we are, we are not meeting minimum standards…

New York Law Journal: City Broadens Its Evaluation of Indigent Criminal Defense

New York City officials are testing a number of methods to assess the quality of indigent criminal defense, which, they say, is part of a broader attempt to make for a fairer criminal justice system. Though the city now tracks conviction rates, incarceration rates, case duration, charge reduction and disposition at arraignments, officials in Mayor…

The Indypendent: The Poor Man’s Lawyer: Inequality in the Courtroom

As the judge read out the sentence, Jose Santiago and the public defense attorney he’d just met that day listened in an almost empty courtroom. It was 2009, and Santiago spent the next year and a half in prison. Santiago was arrested one month after his 16th birthday for running past a pedestrian and snatching…

The Marshall Project: ‘The Garb of Innocence’

When jury selection began this week in the trial of James Holmes — the man accused of killing 12 people in a Colorado movie theater — he looked different than he had in prior court hearings. He traded his jail garb for khakis and a sport coat. Instead of wearing shackles and chains, he was…

Mark Loudon-Brown to lead webinar on DNA expert cross examination

Bronx Defenders Criminal Defense Attorney and Forensic Practice Supervisor Mark Loudon-Brown will be leading a National Association for Public Defense (NAPD) webinar on Thursday, February 5, 2015 at 1:00 pm EST. The webinar, entitled “Cross Examining the DNA Analyst: Themes, Chapters, and Examples” will build on the elements of DNA evidence that were discussed in the previous webinar led…

BronxNet: Today’s Verdict

“We know that young white men, for example, smoke marijuana at rates at least on par or at higher rates than young black or Latino men, and yet 87% of the people arrested for marijuana possession in New York City are black and Latino, and in the Bronx that number is 95%.” The Bronx Defenders’…

WBAI’s On the Count: Immigration and Detention Post-Obama Executive Order

The Bronx Defenders Immigration Attorney Conor Gleason joined Abraham Paolos of Families for Freedom to discuss the New York Immigrant Family Unity Project (NYIFUP) and the impact on families of deportations post-Executive Action Orders on WBAI’s “On the Count” with guest host Khalil Cumberbatch last Saturday, January 10, 2015. Listen to the segment here:

HuffPost Live: Report Highlights Marijuana Enforcement’s Costs

Bronx Defenders Fundamental Fairness Project Director Scott Levy appeared on HuffPost Live, hosted by Josh Zepps, earlier today together with Alberto Willmore, a New York teacher who lost his position after a marijuana arrest, to discuss the costs of marijuana arrests in New York City and The Bronx Defenders’ new report “The Hidden Tax: Economic Costs…

The Bronx Defenders releases its report “The Hidden Tax: Economic Costs of Marijuana Enforcement in the Bronx and New York City”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 17, 2014 Contact: Scott Levy, The Bronx Defenders, 718-838-7833, ScottL@bronxdefenders.org The Hidden Tax: Economic Costs of Marijuana Enforcement in the Bronx and New York City New York – The Bronx Defenders released The Hidden Tax: Economic Costs of Marijuana Enforcement in New York, a report by The Bronx Defenders Fundamental Fairness…

New York Law Journal: Panel Addresses Problems With Overwhelmed Summons Courts

In response to the New York City Police Department’s change in approach to low-level marijuana possession offenses, defense attorneys who have worked in the Summons Courts warned that the system is already strained enough. During a New York City Council hearing on Monday, attorneys in several legal service organizations discussed multiple flaws in the summons…