MACDL and CPCS are the plaintiffsin a petition to the SJC, represented by lawyers from the ACLU of Massachusetts, asking the court to take immediate action to limit outbreaks of COVID-19 by reducing the numbers of people who are incarcerated in Massachusetts jails, prisons, and houses of correction, in order “to mitigate the mortal harm that the COVID-19 pandemic will inflict upon incarcerated people, on corrections staff, and […]
March 13, 12:30 to 1:30pm
Todd & Weld, LLP, One Federal Street, Boston
JOIN US for an informal brown bag lunch with Jane Peachy of the Federal Defenders, who will lead a conversation about strategies for excellent sentencing advocacy applicable in both state and federal court. Our discussion will cover both the underlying principles and purposes of sentencing and the nuts and bolts […]
On Friday, February 28, Judge Cannone granted a preliminary injunction in a lawsuit filed by MACDL and CPCS against the Massachusetts Department of Condition, regarding conditions at the Souza Baranowski prison. The ruling will allow prisoners to keep legal paperwork in their cells, have sufficient time during business hours to make attorney phone calls, and have in-person visits with their lawyers.
On February 19, 2020, MACDL, the New England Innocence Project, Lawyers for Civil Rights, and the Houston Institute filed an amicus brief in Commonwealth v. Long, currently pending before the Supreme Judicial Court. The brief asks the court to chart a new path in order to effectively address the problem of racially discriminatory pretextual stops.
As the brief argues, “[o]verwhelming empirical evidence of pervasive racial disparities in traffic enforcement mandates […]
MACDL today, October 17, 2019 MACDL today, October 17, 2019, joined with Hampden Lawyers for Justice and the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts (“ACLUM”) and a team of lawyers from the law firm Morgan Lewis serving as pro bono counsel to file an amicus brief in Carrasquillo v. Hampden County District Court, an appeal pending before the SJC and scheduled to be argued in November.
MACDL President Victoria Kelleher testified on October 8, 2019 on behalf of MACDL before the Legislative Committee in support of H3358/S826, An Act to Reduce Mass Incarceration, which would permit a parole hearing for prisoners serving life in prison after 25 years. Her testimony focused on (1) the negligible difference between first degree murder, which carries a mandatory sentence of life without the […]
MACDL, the ACLU of Massachusetts, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and the Committee for Public Counsel Services have submitted a brief on cutting-edge Fourth Amendment issues in Commonwealth v. McCarthy, SJC-12750. The brief attacks the rapidly expanding and largely unfettered use of Automated License Plate Readers (ALPRs) by law enforcement in the Commonwealth and across the country. In the absence of ANY legislation regulating the use of ALPRs […]
In Fernandes the SJC partially extended its past decision in Commonwealth v. Walczak, and required the Commonwealth to provide legal instructions to grand juries in adult murder cases when the case involves substantial evidence of a complete defense to the murder charge. It further acknowledged that “it is generally advisable for prosecutors to instruct grand juries on the elements of lesser offenses and defenses whenever such instructions would help […]
MACDL urges its members to oppose ABA Resolution 114, which calls on state legislatures to use an affirmative consent standard for sexual assault cases. The proposed standard will unconstitutionally shift the burden of proof to defendants facing extremely serious charges. MACDL has called upon the Massachusetts representatives to the ABA House of Delegates to oppose the resolution; our letter regarding the resolution is below. A listing of all […]
MACDL joined CPCS in submitting an amicus brief authored by attorney K. Hayne Barnwell in the case of Wallace W. v. Commonwealth. In the court’s August 9, 2019 decision, it held that prosecutors must prove to a judge beyond a reasonable doubt that a juvenile has committed a prior offense before they can prosecute him for a subsequent misdemeanor charge. David […]