Misdemeanor Prosecution and Defense – 7551
Fall 2012** Multi-semester course
As a student in the Criminal Justice Clinic, you will have a challenging and rewarding experience prosecuting misdemeanor cases and representing clients charged with misdemeanor offenses. Through your classroom and courtroom work, you will learn and develop the fundamental practical and legal skills that will serve you well as you embark on your career as a practicing attorney. You also will be challenged to think critically and creatively about the criminal justice system, the role of prosecutors and defense attorneys, legal ethics, and criminal law and procedure.
Students registering for this combined year-long clinic will participate in a Prosecution Clinic in the fall semester and a Defense Clinic in the spring semester. The Prosecution Clinic will also include students who are only taking the one semester Prosecution Clinic Course.
The Prosecution Clinic Course will involve a combination of classroom work and supervised student prosecution of individuals charged with petty misdemeanor, misdemeanor, and gross misdemeanor offenses in Hennepin, Ramsey, and Anoka County District Courts. Students will handle cases at all stages of the criminal process, including arraignments, pre-trial conferences, and court trials. There also will be a weekly two-hour seminar component that will include lectures on substantive criminal law and procedure, criminal justice policy issues, simulation exercises, role playing, skills training exercises, and self-evaluation.
The Defense Clinic Course will provide students with the skills and legal knowledge to effectively, zealously, and ethically represent a client charged with a criminal offense. Similar to the Prosecution clinic, the course will involve a combination of classroom work and supervised student representation of clients charged with misdemeanor offenses in Hennepin County District Court. Student attorneys will be involved in representing clients at all stages of the criminal process, including arraignments, pretrial conferences, and trials. There also will be a weekly two-hour seminar component devoted to misdemeanor laws and procedure, trial and advocacy skills, evidence, policy issues in the criminal justice system, and case strategy discussions.