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Upholding the Rule of Law and Preventing Wrongful Convictions Training and Technical Assistance Program

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Awardee County
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $450,000)

The Quattrone Center for the Fair Administration of Justice at the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School seeks to continue its work as the training and technical assistance provider to grantees under the Upholding the Rule of Law and Preventing Wrongful Convictions Program (URL/PWC). The objectives are to: help award recipients successfully implement their projects, develop and enhance partnerships among Entities and other criminal justice stakeholders, assist Entities in developing and implementing a wrongful conviction risk assessment process to enhance their capacity to identify and review high risk cases, and enhance the expertise of Entities to support quality post-conviction legal representation.

The Quattrone Center will meet the objectives of the URL/PWC program through direct training and assistance to Entities and partner Units with in-person (as allowed by pandemic travel restrictions) or virtual meetings. Training needs will be assessed by Center staff and content will be based on those assessments as well as ongoing discussions with each recipient. The Center will continue to expand monthly collaboration and networking opportunities. These meetings give Entities the ability to work directly with Center staff or Subject Matter Experts as needed to address issues or problems. The Quattrone Center will continue its work in bringing Subject Matter Experts to the monthly meetings to create resources related to improving partnerships among Entitities and units and the quality of post-conviction investigations and litigation. Those presentations will be available online.

In addition, the Quattrone Center seeks to address two needs identified by Entities to improve the quality of post-conviction representation: (1) data collection and analysis evaluation, and (2) trial advocacy training. The need for understanding how to collect and analyze data has been an ongoing issue for Entities; by collecting better data Entities will be better able to quickly evaluate high risk cases, improve their investigation and litigation strategies. Training in fundamental trial advocacy skills will prepare Entity lawyers to provide high quality representation. Resources in both areas will be produced for broad dissemination among Entities and others engaged in post-conviction litigation.

Finally, the Quattrone Center will expand its work making available resources for those engaged in post-conviction litigation and investigations. The Center anticipates producing resources in best practices of engagement, risk assessment, advanced forensics, and other areas. The Center will create an online database searchable for content and information needed by lawyers who screen, investigate, and handle potential cases of wrongful conviction.

Date Created: November 15, 2021