Since many drug overdose homicide prosecutions rely on digital data, it is critical for defenders to be prepared to address the technological limits and legal challenges to be made. To learn how to challenge digital and cellphone data, explore NACDL’s Fourth Amendment Center.
- Good Samaritan Fatal Overdose Prevention and Drug-induced Homicide: Summary of State Laws, Legislative Analysis and Public Policy Association, August 2020.
- Municipal Drug Strategy: Lessons in Taking Drug Policy Reform Local, Drug Policy Alliance, January 2019.
- Law Enforcement Efforts to Fight the Opioid Crisis: Convening Police Leaders, Multidisciplary Partners, and Researchers to Identify Promising Practices and to Inform a Research Agenda, Sean E. Goodison, Michael J. D. Vermeer, Jeremy D. Barnum, Dulani Woods, Brian A. Jackson, the Rand Corporation, 2019.
- More Imprisonment Does Not Reduce State Drug Problems, Pew Charitable Trust, 2018.
- Improving Drug Specificity and Completeness on Death Certificates for Overdose Deaths: Opportunities and Challenges for States, Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, 2018.
- An Overdose Death Is Not Murder: Why Drug-Induced Homicide Laws Are Counterproductive and Inhumane, Drug Policy Alliance, 2017.
- First Do No Harm: Advancing Public Health in Policing Practices, Vera Institute of Justice, 2015.
- Burrage v. United States, 134 S.Ct. 881 (2014), Read NACDL's Amicus
- Commonwealth v. Jesse Carrillo, pending Mass. Supreme Court, Amicus by CPCS, Health in Justice Action Lab, and MACDL.
- America's Favorite Antidote: Drug-Induced Homicide in the Age of the Overdose Crisis, Leo Beletsky, Utah Law Review, 2019.
- Chasing the Deadly Dragon: How the Opioid Crisis in the United States is Impacting the Enforcement of Drug-Induced Homicide Statutes, Hailey Varner, University of Illinois Law Review, 2019.
- Drug Dealer or Murderer? Pennsylvania’s Approach to Drug Delivery Resulting in Death, Stormie B. Mauck, Penn State Law Review, 2019.
- The Overdose/Homicide Epidemic, Valeena Beety, Georgia State University Law Review, 2018.
- National Research Council, Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward, Medical Examiner and Coroner Systems: Current and Future Needs, 2009.
- The Law (and Politics) of Safe Injection Facilities in the United States, Leo Beletsky, Corey S. Davis, Evan Anderson, and Scott Burris, American Journal of Public Health, 2008.
- A Dose of Reality: Drug Death Investigations and the Criminal Justice System, Hawes and Martin, June 2019.
- Record Overdose Deaths in 12-Month Period: CDC, Andrea Cipriano, The Crime Report, December 30, 2020.
- We Should Be Vigilant Against Attacks on the Supreme Court’s Burrage Ruling, Rory Fleming, Filter, April 1, 2020.
- The Wrong Way to Fight the Opioid Crisis, Paige Williams, The New Yorker, February 3, 2020.
- Prosecuting Overdose Deaths as Homicides is Counterproductive, Leo Beletsky, The Columbus Dispatch, December 19, 2019.
- The Latest Failure in the War on Drugs, Brandon D.L Marshall and Abdullah Shihipar, The New York Times, November 19, 2019.
- My Friend and I both took heroin. He overdosed. Why was I charged with his death?, Morgan Godvin, November 26, 2019.
- Changing Faces: How The Opioid Epidemic Is Sweeping Across Urban Minority Communities in the US, Jasmine Drake and Jennifer Wyatt Bougeois, Houston Forward Times, May 7, 2019.
- Opioid Intervention Court reaches one-year mark in Cumberland County, Joshua Vaughn, The Sentinel, February 26, 2019.
- Crime Stat: Overdose deaths lead charged homicides in Cumberland County, Joshua Vaughn, The Sentinel, January 21, 2019.
- Man Charged with Homicide for Sharing Drugs with Woman who Later Died, Joshua Vaughn, January 16, 2019.
- A Pennsylvania Man Survived an Overdose Only to be Charged with Homicide, Joshua Vaughn, the Appeal, July 24, 2018.
- Man Charged with Homicide for Sharing Drugs with Woman Who Later Died, Joshua Vaughn, The Appeal, Jan. 15, 2018.
- Law Enforcement is Urged to "Think Like a Parent, Not a Prosecutor, Joshua Vaughn, The Appeal, July 10, 2019.
- Drug Induced Homicide Laws: State by State, PDAPS and Health in Justice Action Lab, January 2019.
- They Shared Drugs. Someone Died. Does That Make Them Killers?, Rosa Goldensohn, The New York Times, May 25, 2018.
- Charging 'Dealers' With Homicide: Explained, Zachary Siegel and Leo Beletsky, The Appeal, Nov. 2, 2018.
- Amid Opioid Crisis Pennsylvania District Attorneys Advocate for War on Drugs by Zachary Siegel, The Appeal, December 20, 2017.
- Representative Sara Innamorato shares her personal story and urges compassionate reform, November 2019.
- Advocacy Call on Drug-Induced Homicide Laws, October 2019.
- Justice Science Podcast, Special Release: Just the Census of Medical Examiners and Coroners.
- Justice Science Podcast, Just Throwing DARTS at the Opioid Crisis.
- Free on-demand training for the defense: Defending Drug Overdose Homicide Cases (2021): a four-part program covering charges and defenses, digital evidence, forensic science, and trial skills / Register for Access
- The Overdose Crisis, Public Health, and DDRD Prosecutions, Defending Drug Overdose Homicides in Pennsylvania, NACDL, November 2019.
- Opioids, Addiction, and the Brain, Defending Drug Overdose Homicides in Pennsylvania, NACDL, November 2019.
- Understanding and Challenging the Law: Federal Drug Delivery When Death Results Statute Decoded, Defending Drug Overdose Homicides in Pennsylvania, NACDL, November 2019.
- Understanding and Challenging the Law: Pennsylvania DDRD Statute Decoded, Defending Drug Overdose Homicides in Pennsylvania, NACDL, November 2019.
- Humanizing the Client & the Cause: Effective Sentencing, Managing Media, & Engaging the Community, Defending Drug Overdose Homicides in Pennsylvania, NACDL, November 2019.
- Pretrial Motions Practice, Defending Drug Overdose Homicides in Pennsylvania, NACDL, November 2019.
- Understanding and Challenging the Drugs: Chemistry and Toxicology, Defending Drug Overdose Homicides in Pennsylvania, NACDL, November 2019.
- Understanding and Challenging Cause of Death: Forensic Pathology and Coroners Systems, Defending Drug Overdose Homicides in Pennsylvania, NACDL, November 2019.
- Understanding and Challenging Cause of Death: Forensive Pathology and Coroners Systems - Sample Cross, Defending Drug Overdose Homicides in Pennsylvania, NACDL, November 2019.
- Drug-Induced Homicide Defense Toolkit, Beety et al., October 2019.
Organizational Position Papers
Drug-Induced Homicide Prosecutions, Fair & Just Prosecution, July 2022.
- National District Attorneys Association, The Opioid Epidemic: A State and Local Prosecutor Response, 2018.
- National Asociation of Attorneys General, Prosecuting Drug Overdose Cases: A Paradigm Shift, 2018.
- National Association of Medical Examiners Position Paper, Recommendations for the Investigation, Diagnosis and Certification of Deaths Related to Opioid Drugs, 2013.
- National Center for State Courts, National Judicial Opioid Task Force, 2019.
- Police Executive Research Forum (PERF), The Unprecedented Opioid Epidemic: As overdoses become a leading cause of death, police, sheriffs, and health agencies must step up their response, September 2017.
- Addressing Drug Induced Homicide Prosecutions, Health in Justice Action Lab
- National Harm Reduction Coalition
- A New Approach: A Prosecutor’s Guide to Advancing a Public Health Response to Drug Use, Institute for Innovation in Prosecution at John Jay College
A Defender’s Guide to Federal Evidence: A Trial Practice Handbook for Criminal Defense Attorneys
This Guide to Federal Evidence is the only federal evidence handbook written exclusively for criminal defense lawyers. The Guide analyzes each Federal Rule of Evidence and outlines the main evidentiary issues that confront criminal defense lawyers. It also summarizes countless defense favorable cases and provides tips on how to avoid common evidentiary pitfalls. The Guide contains multiple user-friendly flowcharts aimed at helping the criminal defense lawyer tackle evidence problems. A Defender’s Guide to Federal Evidence is an indispensable tool in preparing a case for trial.
Modern Digital Evidence & Technologies in Criminal Cases
Modern cases need modern defenses, and modern lawyers can't practice with an outdated playbook. This program is a contemporary training that identifies emerging technologies and digital evidence encountered in today's criminal cases and arms you with the tools necessary to combat expert witnesses, prosecutorial overreach, and an uneducated judge and jury. This comprehensive CLE program covers both general aspects of new technologies as well as practical courtroom application and legal challenges to the use of these new technologies.
Top Shelf DUI Defenses: The Law, The Science, The Techniques (2021)
If you are serious about being an effective DUI defense advocate, or if you’re considering adding DUI defenses to your portfolio, you need to know the latest scientific and legal strategies to optimize your success at trial. Learn from the best-of-the-best in the field in this unique CLE Program, updated for 2021.
Defending Modern Drug Cases (2021)
From challenging the arrest and seizure to picking a jury and cross-examining police officers, defense attorneys handling drug cases must be able to construct a defense that will increase the chances of the client getting a positive result for your client.
Effective motion practice, juror selection, and storytelling have never been more important. This seminar will introduce defense counsel to techniques that have been used at recent drug trials to rebut specific claims and overcome the emotion created in today’s criminal legal system.
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- "Drug overdose crisis worsens in shadow of COVID-19 pandemic,"