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The State of American Criminal Justice
December 7, 2016 @ 5:00 am - 12:00 pm EST

The Cato Institute invites you to a Special Conference

The State of American Criminal Justice



Wednesday, December 7, 201610:00AM5:00PM
Cato Institute, 1000 Massachusetts Ave., NW, Washington, D.C.


Details and Registration

After another year of protests and unrest across the country, criminal justice reform remains a contentious issue. Some cities have experienced an increase in homicide rates, police departments are under intense scrutiny for their handling of police shootings, and prisoners are protesting living conditions. Meanwhile, policymakers are making scant progress to roll back mass incarceration.

Given the decentralized nature of the American criminal justice system, with some 18,000 law enforcement agencies spread across 50 state jurisdictions, which reforms are the most urgent, and what can we realistically expect to accomplish in the near term? To help answer these questions, the Cato Institute will host a conference to address the most pressing issues. The State of American Criminal Justice brings together experts from courtrooms, universities, prisons, and police departments to examine the myriad policies and incentives that drive the criminal justice system at its various stages—seeking insights, strategies, and solutions. Join us for a discussion on some of the most urgent criminal justice questions facing policymakers today at all levels of government.



Panel 1: The Human Toll of Incarceration

  • Kevin Ring, Vice President, Families against Mandatory Minimums
  • Marc Mauer, Executive Director, Sentencing Project
  • Keeda Haynes, Public Defender, Nashville Defenders
  • Moderated by Adam Bates, Policy Analyst, Project on Criminal Justice, Cato Institute

Panel 2: From Attica to Mass Incarceration: How Did We Get Here?

  • John Pfaff, Professor of Law, Fordham University
  • Jonathan Simon, Adrian A. Kragen Professor of Law and Director, Center for the Study of Law and Society, University of California, Berkeley
  • Heather Ann Thompson, Professor of History, University of Michigan
  • Moderated by Matthew Feeney, Policy Analyst, Cato Institute

Panel 3:The Intersection of Technology, Oversight, and Legitimacy in 21st Century Policing

  • Tracey Meares, Walton Hale Hamilton Professor of Law, Yale University
  • Elizabeth Joh, Professor of Law, University of California, Davis
  • Walter Katz, Independent Police Auditor, City of San Jose
  • Maj. Max Geron, Dallas Police Department
  • Moderated by Jonathan Blanks, Research Associate, Cato Institute

Panel 4: Inside the Courtroom

  • Harvey Silverglate, Counsel Attorney, Zalkind Duncan & Bernstein LLP
  • Hon. Shira Scheindlin, United States District Judge, Southern District of New York (ret.); Of Counsel, Stroock, Stroock, & Lavan LLP
  • Ken White, Attorney, Brown, White & Osborn, LLP
  • Moderated by Trevor Burrus, Research Fellow, Center for Constitutional Studies, Cato Institute

Keynote Speaker

  • Adam J. Foss, Prosecutor Integrity

If you can’t make it to the event, watch it live online and join the conversation on Twitter using #CatoCJ.


This Cato Conference is free of charge.
To register to attend this event, click the button below, email events@cato.org, or call (202) 789-5229 by 10:00AM on Tuesday, December 6, 2016.




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