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Please join us for a panel discussion via Zoom on the Derek Chauvin verdict. We acknowledge that the killing of George Floyd and the events leading to and including the trial of former police officer Chauvin are traumatic for many in our community. Our speakers are experts in criminal and civil rights law. They will unpack the verdict and contextualize it within the landscape of current law and police reform, highlighting efforts taking place to hold law enforcement officers and agencies accountable for criminal and civil rights violations.
This event is open to the entire Stanford Community.
Sheila A. Bedi
Sheila A. Bedi is a clinical professor of law at the Northwestern Pritzker School of Law and director of the Community Justice and Civil Rights Clinic, a law school clinic that provides students with the opportunities to work within social-justice movements on legal and policy strategies aimed at redressing over-policing and mass imprisonment. Bedi litigates civil-rights claims on behalf of people who have endured police violence and abusive prison conditions. She also represents grassroots community groups seeking to end mass imprisonment and to redress abusive policing. Bedi teaches classes on legal reasoning and writing and the law of state violence to students who are incarcerated through Northwestern’s Prison Education Program. Bedi’s partnerships with affected communities on litigation and policy campaigns have closed notorious prisons and jails, increased community oversight of law enforcement, created alternatives to imprisonment and improved access to public education and mental health services. Previously, Bedi served as a deputy legal director of the Southern Poverty Law Center.
|David B. Owens
Partner, Loevy & LoevyOwens joined Loevy & Loevy in 2012, and his practice is national, representing clients from Washington and California, in Wisconsin and Illinois, and throughout the South. Owens is dedicated to zealous, client-centered advocacy on behalf of those seeking vindication for the violation of their civil rights and focuses on cases involving wrongful convictions, police shootings and other excessive force, false arrests, free speech rights, race discrimination, and other violations of the U.S. Constitution.
A proud Seattle native, Owens completed his undergraduate at the University of Washington. Owens later earned his J.D. and an M.A. in Philosophy from Stanford University in 2010. At Stanford Law, Owens was the Senior Articles Editor of the Stanford Law Review, a Member Editor of the Stanford Environmental Law Journal, received the Gerald Gunther Prize for Outstanding Performance in Federal Courts, earned Pro Bono distinction, and served as a fellow in the Levin Center for Public Interest. He was also a member of the Stanford Supreme Court Litigation Clinic, where he worked on numerous cases at the United States Supreme Court, most notably representing a number of civil rights groups in banking regulation litigation and successfully representing an indigent criminal defendant in Flores-Figueroa v. United States, 556 U.S. 646 (2009), which avoided harsh application of a mandatory-minimum sentencing statute. During law school, Owens also worked for the ACLU of Washington Foundation; a nonprofit in Lagos, Nigeria institute Miranda-derived protections against coerced confessions; and a boutique firm in San Francisco specializing in environmental protection issues.
Owens clerked for the Honorable Diane P. Wood of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit and the Honorable Myron H. Thompson of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Alabama in Montgomery, Alabama.
Owens is Lecturer in Law at the University of Chicago, where he co-teaches in the school’s pro bono wrongful conviction clinic, The Exoneration Project. Owens is also dedicated to pro bono work. In addition to representing clients with the Exoneration Project, Owens serves as a member of the Coalition for the Fair Sentencing of Youth in Illinois; represents juveniles who were given life sentences but are now entitled to new sentencing hearings under Miller v. Alabama; and representing claimants in proceedings before the Illinois Torture Inquiry Commission. At the University of Chicago, Owens has also collaborated with other clinics, including trying a case on behalf of a criminal defendant with the Federal Criminal Justice Clinic.
Other pro bono work includes writing amicus briefs in district and appellate courts in civil rights and criminal cases.
|David Alan Sklansky
Stanley Morrison Professor of Law, Stanford Law School
David Sklansky is the Stanley Morrison Professor of Law at Stanford Law School where he teaches and writes about criminal law, criminal procedure, and evidence. His newest book is A Pattern of Violence: How the Law Classifies Crimes and What It Means for Justice (Harvard University Press 2021). Sklansky’s past scholarship has addressed the law, sociology, and political science of policing; the relationship between criminal justice and democracy, the proper exercise and constraint of prosecutorial power; the interpretation and application of the Fourth Amendment; fairness and accuracy in criminal adjudication; the relationship between criminal justice and immigration laws; and the role of race, gender, and sexual orientation in law enforcement. He serves as faculty co-director of the Stanford Criminal Justice Center and is a faculty affiliate of Stanford’s Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity. Earlier he served as an Assistant United States Attorney in Los Angeles.
|Ralph Richard Banks (Moderator)
Jackson Eli Reynolds Professor of Law; Faculty Director, Stanford Center for Racial Justice
Ralph Richard Banks (BA ’87, MA ’87) is the Jackson Eli Reynolds Professor of Law at Stanford Law School, the co-founder and Faculty Director of the Stanford Center for Racial Justice, and Professor, by courtesy, at the School of Education. A native of Cleveland, Ohio and a graduate of Stanford University and Harvard Law School (JD 1994), Banks has been a member of the Stanford faculty since 1998. Prior to joining the law school, he practiced law at O’Melveny & Myers, was the Reginald F. Lewis Fellow at Harvard Law School and clerked for a federal judge, the Honorable Barrington D. Parker, Jr. (then of the Southern District of New York). Professor Banks teaches and writes about family law, employment discrimination law and race and the law. He is the author of Is Marriage for White People? How the African American Marriage Decline Affects Everyone. At Stanford, he is affiliated with the Michelle R. Clayman Institute for Gender Research, the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and the Ethnicity, the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education and the Center for the Study of Poverty and Inequality. His writings have appeared in a wide range of popular and scholarly publications, including the Stanford Law Review, the Yale Law Journal, The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times. He has been interviewed and quoted by numerous print and broadcast media, including ABC News/Nightline, National Public Radio, The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times, among others.