Spring 2021 • Clinic
Criminal Prosecution Clinic
Enrollment in this clinic will fulfill the HLS JD pro bono requirement.
Open to 3Ls only
Required Class Component: ITA: Prosecution Perspectives (3 spring classroom credits). This clinic and course are bundled; your enrollment in this clinic will automatically enroll you in the required course.
Additional Co-/Pre-Requisites: Trial Advocacy Workshop (TAW) and Evidence. Students must enroll in TAW and Evidence seperate from their clinical registration.
By Permission: No.
Add/Drop Deadline: August 31, 2020.
LLM Students: International students on F-1 student visas are required to have Curricular Practical Training (CPT) authorization; LL.M. students are not eligible for CPT.
Placement Site: Various D.A. Offices throughout Massachusetts.
This clinic and course will focus on the role of and decision-making by the prosecutor in the criminal justice system, with particular attention to the exercise of discretion by the prosecutor in investigation, charging, plea negotiation and sentencing recommendation decisions. It will also involve an examination of the lawyering skills involved in case analysis, interviewing witnesses, and negotiation, and other aspects of case handling and courtroom advocacy, in the context of the District Court.
A clinical practice component is required of all students. Students must have at least two full days in their schedule free from 8am to 5pm for the clinical component. Clinical placements are with the Middlesex, Norfolk, Suffolk, or Essex County District Attorney’s Office. Under the supervision of assistant district attorneys, students work a minimum of twenty hours per week to represent the Commonwealth in prosecuting District Court criminal cases. While student experiences vary, students are likely to handle arraignments, bail hearings, pretrial conferences, motion hearings, pleas and trials. Some students may handle a jury trial. Clinical placements will begin immediately after the completion of the fall Trial Advocacy Workshop. Readings will consist primarily of multilithed materials. Students are required to keep a journal relating to their fieldwork experiences and to prepare several short practical skills exercises.
The classroom component of this clinical course satisfies the Law School’s professional responsibility requirement.
Enrollment is through clinical registration. Please refer to the Office of Clinical and Pro Bono Programs website for clinical registration dates, early add/drop deadlines, and other relevant information.