New York, NY (April 19, 2010) – On Tuesday, April 20 from 6:00-9:00 PM, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL), New York County Lawyers’ Association Criminal Justice Section (NYCLA) and the New York State Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section are co- sponsoring “Problem-Solving Courts Symposium: The Pros and Cons of Treatment in the Criminal Justice System,” at the NYCLA Home of Law, 14 Vesey Street, New York, NY 10007. Panelists will debate the various functions of problem-solving courts, including access, standards and whether those most in need of treatment are being served. The discussion will focus on how to effectively find solutions to some of society’s concerns while balancing individual constitutional rights.
The symposium, free and open to the public will include the following panelists: Hon. Marcia P. Hirsch, Presiding Justice, Queens Treatment Court; Justin Barry, coordinator, New York City Citywide Drug Court; Marvin Schechter, co-chair, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers’ Problem-Solving Courts Task Force; Lisa Schreibersdorf, Esq., executive director, Brooklyn Defender Services; Candice Singer, policy analyst, National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, New Jersey; and Anne Swern, first assistant district attorney, Kings County, in charge of the Drug Treatment Alternative to Prison Program, the first prosecution-run program in the country to divert prison-bound felony offenders into residential drug treatment. The moderator will be Joel M. Schumm, professor of clinical law at the Indiana University School of Law.
Drug courts were instituted in the early 1980s by Janet Reno, who was then Miami Dade’s State Attorney, as a means of stemming the overflow of low-level drug suspects in South Florida’s prisons. The initial courts were set up with the intent of diverting these defendants into treatment programs instead of prison. Now, 20 years later, there are more than 2,100 such courts in existence.
These courts have helped many individuals addicted to drugs gain access to treatment and find their way into becoming productive members of society. However, many are concerned with the constitutional challenges inherent in a system that limits defense attorneys’ ability to zealously advocate for their clients, ensures a criminal conviction is part of the cost of failure, and has barriers to accessibility for minorities, the poor and immigrants.
In September 2009, NACDL released a report entitled America’s Problem-Solving Courts: The Criminal Costs of Treatment and the Case for Reform. The report was the product of a two-year critical analysis of these courts that presented examples of best practicing courts, and provided several recommendations on how to ensure these courts function effectively and efficiently. The report also addressed controversial issues such as stringent eligibility requirements, the lack of national standards in the establishment and functioning of these courts, and ethical issues faced by the defense bar.
Copies of the Executive Summary and report and will be available at the event and can be accessed online at Executive Summary and America''s Problem Solving Courts: The Criminal Costs of Treatment and the Case for Reform.
For more information, please contact Angelyn C. Frazer at (202) 872-8600 ext. 242 or via email at email@example.com. To register, please visit www.nacdl.org/drugcourts.
Pattern Cross-Examination for DNA and Biological Evidence: A Trial Strategy Guide
NACDL’s Pattern Cross-Examination for DNA and Biological Evidence will assist criminal defense practitioners in scoring points when cross-examining forensic experts in cases involving DNA and biological evidence. This resource contains thousands of questions that will help defense lawyers cross-examine challenging witnesses without reinventing the wheel with each new case. It includes pattern questions that can be used to dominate prosecution DNA experts and level the playing field at trial.
Cross-Examination of the Analyst in Drug Prosecutions (2nd Ed.) By James M. Shellow
Now in its second edition with some new material, James M. Shellow’s book offers what its title promises: ways of thinking about cross-examining the forensic analysts in drug cases. But the book is so much more than that. It offers a look inside the mind of one of the finest cross-examiners and defense lawyers the United States has produced in the last seventy years. This small book can inspire and direct you in making big changes in the way you defend your clients and think about the entire project of trying any case.
Justice For All, Justice Now White T-Shirt (Women’s)
This custom, vintage-faded NACDL t-shirt is 50% polyester, 25% cotton, and 25% rayon weighing 5.2 oz. and is lightwieght, flexible and soft, providing maximum comfort. It features the "Justice For All, Justice Now" slogan and Lady Liberty image on the front, with the NACDL logo on the back. Currently available in both men's and women's sizes in both black and white colors. View the full line-up of colors and sizes on our online store, as well as our other popular and best-selling t-shirt designs at: nacdl.org/store.
Drug Cases Resource Materials Collection - CD-ROM
NACDL’s Drug Cases Resource Materials Collection is the sweeping culmination of every single article of written materials ever published from each installment of NACDL's annual "Defending Modern Drug Cases" seminar. Totaling over 12,000 pages, this vast collection includes 12+ years of motions, briefs, reports, outlines, transcripts, case citations, scholarly articles, powerpoints and other written commentaries. This collection provides trial strategies and tactics you can immediately apply to your current cases.
Mental Illness & the Law: Addressing and Litigating Behavioral Health Disorders in Criminal Cases
Whether it is insanity, impairment, a disorder, or adolescent brain development; mental health and intellectual competence issues affect pretrial supervision, trial and sentencing, and your chances of successfully advocating for your impaired client. This training provides ideas and proven solutions to assist you in advocating for your client during trial, whether it be insanity defenses, jury selection, cross of expert witnesses, persuasion, or mitigation at sentencing.
NACDL Communications Department
The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is the preeminent organization advancing the mission of the criminal defense bar to ensure justice and due process for persons accused of crime or wrongdoing. A professional bar association founded in 1958, NACDL's many thousands of direct members in 28 countries – and 90 state, provincial and local affiliate organizations totaling up to 40,000 attorneys – include private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness and promoting a rational and humane criminal legal system.