The goal of this course is to provide students with opportunities inside and outside the classroom to examine the role of bail in the criminal legal system. Students will participate in field placements at the Bail Project (www.bailproject.org), which is a non-profit organization designed to combat mass incarceration by disrupting the money bail system ‒ one person at a time. The Bail Project is a nationwide project aiming to open 40 sites nation-wide in the next five years. Working alongside Bail Project staff, including Skylar Albertson, (Liman Fellow 2018 – 2019), Dolores Canales (Director of Talent Development/Bail Disruptors), Ezra Ritchin (Director of Site Operations) and Thomas Harvey (National Director of Strategic Partnerships and Advocacy), students will have the opportunity to develop their skills in research and writing, oral advocacy, client interviewing, direct representation and policy advocacy. As part of their fieldwork, students will be able to choose from three different project areas:
1. Researching local statutes, customs, and practices related to bail in jurisdictions outside of the California where The Bail Project would like to establish bail funds;
2. Researching California/Los Angeles specific bail statutes, case law, practices and statistics to identify where a bail fund could be located in Los Angeles County, as well as mapping and connecting with key allies and strategic partners to make a bail fund possible. Students in this project area will have the opportunity to interview and advocate for potential bail project clients;
3. Identifying and pursuing potential individual and/or impact litigation based on what clients of The Bail Project are experiencing in various jurisdictions regarding bail practices.