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The Rise of Plea Bargains and Decline of the Right to Trial
December 9, 2020 @ 8:23 am EST

The American Constitution Society and the National Bar Association invite you to attend:

The Rise of Plea Bargains and Decline of the Right to Trial

Today, more than 95 percent of cases that end in a conviction are the result of plea bargains. Frequently, defendants accept plea deals to avoid lengthy prison sentences, unaware of the employment, housing, education, and other ramifications of such pleas. Research has also recently revealed significant racial disparities in the plea-bargaining process, with prosecutors more likely to offer charge reductions to white defendants than black defendants. These findings are particularly troubling because, as Justice Kennedy observed in his opinion for the majority in Missouri v. Fry, plea bargaining “is not some adjunct to the criminal justice system; it is the criminal justice system.”

Join the American Constitution Society and National Bar Association on Thursday, March 8, 2018, for an examination of the extent to which the ubiquity of plea bargains may exacerbate disparate outcomes for people of color, increase the imbalance in power between prosecutors and defendants, affect criminal discovery obligations, risk wrongful convictions, and even contribute to our mass incarceration crisis.




Eli Hager (Moderator)Staff Writer, The Marshall Project

Avis Buchanan, Director, Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia

Melba Pearson, Deputy Director, ACLU of Florida; former Assistant State Attorney, Miami-Dade County

Jenny Roberts, Professor of Law, Associate Dean for Scholarship, and Co-Director of the Criminal Justice Clinic, American University Washington College of Law

March 8, 2018
12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
George Washington University Law School
Faculty Conference Center, 5th Floor
2000 H St, NW, Washington, DC 20052

Lunch will be served beginning at 12:00 p.m.

The program will begin at 12:15 p.m.  

RSVP here.


December 9, 2020
8:23 am