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About the Criminal Defense Clinic Section

The Criminal Defense section is designed to teach law students substantive, procedural, and practical trial and appellate advocacy skills in the context of actual criminal cases. Law students are also taught to consider the ethical considerations applicable in the context of their cases and the practice of law as well. At the end of the year, students in this course are expected to be effective trial litigators, having acquired the necessary experience to handle every aspect of a criminal case. Students have multiple experiences in the criminal defense section including interviewing clients and witnesses, formal and informal fact investigation, research and cite the appropriate statutory and case law, drafting pleadings and writing memoranda and briefs. They also, through the guidance and supervision of their clinical professors, who are seasoned criminal trial attorneys, handle every aspect of their court appearances such as pretrial motion hearings, revocation hearings, multiple bill hearings, negotiate plea bargains, jury voir dire, direct and cross examination of witnesses at trial, as well as opening and closing arguments. The practice of criminal law also affords the students the opportunity to file writs and appeals. In the past, students have argued before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal and Louisiana Supreme Court.

Professor Snead discussing with her students

Section Success

Loyola Law Criminal Defense Clinic has been involved in several interesting hearings since the start of the Fall 2022 semester. In one case, the client's bond was revoked after his psychotic break. The student practitioners filed a request to have the client examined by the sanity commission. The client was found incompetent to stand trial and was sent to a forensic facility. After months of treatment, he was deemed restored and returned to Orleans Parish Jail. A motion to reinstate bail was filed and student practitioners argued the case. After extensive argument, the trial court refused to set any amount of bail. The client is currently awaiting trial.

Supervised by Professor D. Majeeda Snead

Section Snapshots

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