Criminal Prosecution Clinic

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Students in the Criminal Prosecution Clinic prosecute crimes in Delaware County, Ohio’s fastest-growing region. The caseload in Delaware, located just north of Columbus, allows students to take responsibility for a wide range of criminal cases, including theft, assault, weapons charges, drug possession, and domestic violence.

The clinic has developed an unusually strong relationship with the judges and prosecutors in Delaware County. The two faculty members who team-teach the clinic hold appointments as special prosecutors, allowing the clinic members full discretion in handling cases. Students interview victims and other witnesses, develop case strategies, negotiate plea bargains with defense attorneys, and conduct hearings, bench trials, and jury trials. The Delaware Municipal Court records all of its proceedings, so students may obtain a DVD recording of their trial work, allowing them to critique that work in class and share it with potential employers.

In the classroom, students learn basic litigation skills and discuss the criminal justice system. They also reflect on their exercises of prosecutorial discretion and their encounters with ethical challenges. The clinic prepares students to work in criminal prosecution or defense, as well as to make critical decisions in other practice areas.