by Kenneth Crouch

On November 13th, the Harvard Defenders hosted accomplished practitioners to discuss the imagined futures and fraught present of the criminal legal system and criminal defense representation. The evening featured Criminal Justice Institute’s Faculty Deputy Director and HLS clinical professor Dehlia Umunna, and Committee for Public Counsel Services’s Legal Training Director Karen Smolar. Via a question-and-answer format, the panelists covered a wide variety of topics, from contemplating the practical challenges posed by ‘restorative’ criminal legal system, to the role of nascent progessive prosecution movements today. Finally, the Harvard Defenders Litman Fellows, law students from across the country who manage the clinic’s cases over the summer, facilitated table discussions around criminal legal topics of local and national significance.